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\ 



SECRET 



PROCEEDINGS AND DEBATE 



FEDERAL CONVENTION. 



SECRET 
PROCEEDINGS AND DEBATES 

OF THE 

CONVENTION 

ASSEMBLED AT PHILADELPHIA, IN THE YEAR 1787, 
FOR THE PURPOSE OF FORMING THE 

CONSTITUTION 

■ I 

OF 

THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA. 

FROM NOTES TAKEN BT THE LATE ROBERT YATES, ESQUIRE, CHIEF 

JUSTICE OF NEW YORK, AND COPIED BY JOHH LANSING, JDN. 

ESQUIRE, LATE CHANCELLOR OF THAT STATE, 

MEMBERS OF THAT CONVENTION. 

INCLUDING 

"THE GENUINE INFORMATION/' 

L.\ID BEFORE THE LEGISLATURE OP MARYLAND, 

By LUTHER MARTIN, Esquire, 

THEN ATTOR.VSr.aBIfERAL OF THAT STATE, AND MEMBER OF THE IAMB CUN VEXTIOiT. 

ALSO. 

OTHER HISTORICAL DOCUMENTS, RELATIVE TO THE FEDERAL 
COMPACT OF THE NORTH A5iERICAN UNION. 



LOUISVILLE, KY. 

PUBLISHED BY ALSTON MYGATT. 

1844. 



Entered according to Act of Congress, in the year 1838, by 

Warner W. Guy, 

iu the Clerk's Office of the District Court of the Eastern District of Virginia. 




s 



PREFACE. 



The historians of kings, with a religious care, 
collect the first words, the first sentiments, and the 
first acts of their infancy ; in the age of innocence, 
those great personages have not yet acquired the 
art of disguise ; and philosophy, more than once, 
has prognosticated, what they would be on the 
throne, by what they have been in the nursery. 

The historians of free nations ought not to be 
less attentive to collect whatever may throw light 
on the origin of their government, on the princi- 
ples which have guided their legislators, and on 
the seeds of disease from which human prudence 
has never been able to guard entirely human insti- 
tutions. The exhibition of such facts impresses 
the mind with cigar and achromatic ideas of the 
nature, action, and power of those political bodies, 
much better than the most elaborate dissertations. 

It is to increase that source of public instruction, 
that a fnend of American history, who long ago 



Vi PREFACE. 

had secured in his portfolio the origmal notes of 
Mr. Yates of the secret proceedings of the con- 
vention that framed the present Constitution of the 
United States, has thought that it would be useful 
to give publicity to those authentic documents; 
especially at a period when improvements and 
alterations in the local constitution of one of the 
main pillars of the North American union, are 
about to be undertaken. These documents may 
serve to show the constitutional lines drawn by 
the true spirit of 1776, and patriotically defended 
by the old republicans of 1787 ; and account, in 
many respects, for a succession of events which 
are the natural, if not the necessary results of a 
preexisting order of things. 

Congress has lately caused to be published the 
journal of the formal proceedings of the federal 
convention ; but, if we are allowed to repeat what 
has previously been observed on that subject, in 
the proposals circulated for publishing the present 
collection, that official journal has left history in 
the dark as to the views of the legislators and the 
principles upon which they acted; and it is in 
reality nothing but a diplomatic skeleton, deprived 
of its vital parts. Messrs. Hamilton, Jay, and 
Madison, in the numbers so well known under the 
title of the Federalist^ which made their appearance 
previous to the interpolation of the ten declaratoi 



PREFACE. Vli 

and restrictive amendments, so fortunately msisted 
on by the States, have, it is true, entered into am- 
ple discussions and elaborate comments to assist 
the public judgment in the investigation of the 
plan of constitution presented to the consideration 
of the States. But discussions and comments are 
not history; and history is never more attractive 
than whea it presents to us on the scene, the ac- 
tors of great transactions ; opens, as it were, the 
doors of their most secret councils to the curiosity 
of the reader, and procures him, wthout the com- 
pulsion of a literary dictatorat, the pleasing task 
of judging for himself of public men and public 
measures. 

It is to be regretted, that Mr. Yates left the 
convention before the draft of the Constitutiou was 
completed ; but he left it after all the basis urged 
by the promoters of the favored plan had been 
adopted by a majority of the representatives of 
the States ; and what he did not hear, has not 
escaped the vigilance of Mr. Luther Martin, whose, 
report is mserted before the notes of Mr. Yates, 
because it embraces a more general view of the 
subject, and may serve as a key to discrimmate 
the several interlocutors mentioned in the Debates. 

We possess no other testimony concerning the 
secret proceedings of the federal convention. It 
is said, that Mr. Madison has also, during the sit- 



Viii PREFACE. 

tings of that body, made his memorandums of the 
controversies which have arisen in debating the 
merits of the Constitution, and that he intends to 
publish them. It will be an additional diflnsion of 
radiant matter on a system of government admira- 
bly well calculated for the general and local ad- 
ministration of extensive free countries, — a sys- 
tem, whose excellence and brilliant success have 
rendered it, not only the pattern, but also the cen- 
tre of gravity and the point of rest of the several 
confederacies forming themselves every day on 
this immense continent, with more rapidity than 
Herschel has discovered his new constellations. 
The talents and the veracity of Mr. Madison in- 
sure the belief, that his memoirs will enrich our 
annals, and that his paternal feelings for the Fed- 
eralist will not aflfect the rigidity of his narratives 
as an historian. 

THE EDITOR. 
Albaity, July, 1821. 



CONTENTS. 



Pag« 

Letter of Luther Martin, Esquire, -Attorney-General of 
Maryland, to the Honorable Thomas Cockey Deye, 
Speaker of the House of Delegates of that State. . 1 

The Grenuina Information, delivered to the Legislature 
of the State of Maryland, relative to the Proceedings 
of the General Convention, held at Philadelphia, in 
1787, by Luther Martin, Esquire, Attorney-General 
of Maryland, and one of the Delegates in the said 
Convention 8 

SECRET DEBATES. 

Notes of the Secret Debates of the Federal Conven- 
tion of 1787, taken by the late Honorable Robert 
Yates, Chief Justice of the State of New York, and 
one of the Delegates from that State to the said 
Convention 99 

Note by John Lansing, Jun 225 



i 




/ ^;.i 



CONTENTS. xi 

Page 

Advertisement, published by the Department of State 

as an Introduction to the Journal of the Convention 
assembled at Philadelphia, Monday, May 12th, and 
dissolved Monday, September 17th, 1787. . . 294 

List of the Members of the Federal Convention which 
formed the Constitution of the United States. . 301 

Letter from the Honorable Robert Yates, and the Hon- 
orable John Lansing, Jun., Esquires, to the Governor 
of New York, containing their Reasons for not Sub- 
scribing to the Federal Constitution. . . . 303 

Letter of his Excellency Edmund Randolph, Esquire, 
on the Federal Constitution, addressed to the Hon- 
orable the Speaker of the House of Delegates, 
Virginia 308 

Biographical Sketch of Chief Justice Yates. . . 329 



3E0RBT PROCEEDINGS 

or THK 

FEDERAL CONVENTION. 



To the Hon. Thomas Cockey Deye, Speaker of the 
House of Delegates of Maryland, 

Sir, 
I FLATTER myself the subject of this letter will be 
a sufficient apology for thus publicly addressing it to 
you, and through you to the other members of the 
House of Delegates. It cannot have escaped your or 
their recollection, that, when called upon, as the ser- 
vant of a free Sta,te, to render an account of those 
transactions in which I had - had a share, in conse- 
quence of the trust reposed in me by that State, 
among other things, I informed them, ^'that some 
time in July, the honorable Mr. Yates and Mr. Lan- 
sing of New York, left the convention; that they 
had uniformly opposed the system, and that, I believe, 
despairing of getting a proper one brought forward, or 
of rendering any real service, they returned no more." 
You cannot. Sir, have forgot, for the iiicident was too 
remarkable not to have made some impression, that, 
upon my giving this information, the zeal of one of 
my honorable colleagues in favor of a system, which 
I thought it my duty to oppose, impelled him to inter- 
rupt me, and, in a manner which I am confident his 
1 






2 SECRET PROCEEDINGS 

zeal alone prevented him from being convinced was 
not the most delicate, to insinuate pretty strongly, that 
the statement which I had given of the conduct of 
those gentlemen, and their motives for not returning, 
were not candid. 

Those honorable members have officially given in- 
formation on this subject, by a joint letter to his Ex- 
cellency Governor Clinton. It is published. Indulge 
me, Sir, in giving an extract from it, that it may stand 
contrasted in the same page with the information I 
gave, and may convict me of, the want of candor of 
which I was charged, if the charge was just. If it 
tHU not do that, then let it Idlence my accusers. 

'^ Thus circumstanced, under these impressions, to 
have hesitated would have been to be culpable ; we, 
therefore, gave the principles of the constitution, which 
has received the sanction of a majority of the conven- 
tion, our decided and unreserved dissent. We were 
not present at the completion of the new constitution ; 
but, before we left the convention, its principles were 
so well established as to convince us, that no alteration 
was to be expected, to conform it to our ideas of expe- 
diency and safety. A persuasion, that our further at- 
tendance would be fruitless and unavailing, rendered 
us less solicitous to return." 

These, Sir, are their words. On this I shall make 
no comment ; I wish not to wound the feelings of 
any person, I only wish to convince. 

I have the honor to remain, with the utmost respect, 
your very obedient servant, 

Lbther Martin. 

BaUimonj January 37tik, 1788. 



OF ThE FEDERAL CONVENTION. 



Tbs Genuine Information, delivered to the Legislature of 
THE State of Maryland, rslajiye to the Proceedings of 
the General Convention, held at Philadelphia, in 1787, by 
LUTHER MARTIN, Esquire, Attorney-General of Mary- 
land, AND ONE OF THE DELEGATES IN THE SAID CONTENTION. 

Mr. Martin, when called upon, addressed the House 
nearly as follows : 

Since I was notified of the resolve of this honora- 
ble House, that we should attend this day, to give in- 
formation with regard io the proceedings of the late 
convention, my time has necessarily been taken up 
with business, and I have also been obliged to make a 
journey to the Eastern Shore. These circumstances 
have prevented me from being as well prepared as I 
could wish, to give the information required. How- 
ever, the few leisure moments I could spare, I have . 
devoted to refreshing my memory, by looking over the 
papers and notes in my possession ; and shall, with 
pleasure, to the best of my abilities, render an account 
of my conduct. 

It was not in my power to attend the convention 
immediately on my appointment. I took my seat, I be- 
lieve, about the 8th or 9th of June. I found that Gov- 
ernor Randolph, of Virginia, had laid before the con- 
vention certain propositions for their consideration, 
which have been read to this House by my honorable 
colleague, and I believe he has very faithfully detailed 
the substance of the speech with which the business of 
the convention was opened ,• for, though I was not there 
at the time, I. saw notes which had been taken of it. 

The members of the convention from the States, 
came there under diflFerent powers; the greatest num- 
ber, I believe, under powers nearly the same as those 



4 SECRET PROCEEDINGS 

of the delegates of this State. Some came to the 
convention under the former appointment, authorizing 
the meeting of delegates merely to regulate trade. 
Those of Delaware were expressly instructed to agree 
to no system, which should take away from the States 
that equality of suffrage secured by the original arti- 
cles of confederation. Before I arrived, a number of 
rales had been adopted to regulate the proceedings of 
the convention, by one of which, seven States might 
proceed to business, and consequently four States, the 
majority of that number, might eventually have agreed 
upon a system, which was to affect the whole Union. 
By another, the doors were to be shut, and the whole 
proceedings were to be kept secrfet ; and so far did this 
rule extend, that we were thereby prevented from cor- 
responding with gentlemen in the different States upon 
the subjects under our discussion ; a circumstance, Sir, 
which, I confess, I greatly regretted. I had no idea, 
that all the wisdom, integrity, and virtue of this State, 
or of the others, were centred in the convention. I 
wished to have corresponded freely and confidentially 
with eminent political characters in my own and other 
States ; not implicitly to be dictated to by them, but 
to give their sentiments due weight and consideration. 
So extremely solicitous were they, that their proceed- 
ings should not transpire, that the members were pro- 
hibited even from taking copies of resolutions, on 
which the convention were deliberating, or extracts 
of any kind from the journals, without formally mov- 
ing for, and obtaining permission, by a vote of the 
convention for that purpose. 

You have heard. Sir, the resolutions which were 
brought forward by the honorable member from Vir- 
ginia; let me call the attention of this House to the 



OF THE FEDERAL CONVENTION., 6 

conduct of Virginia, when our confederation was en- 
tered into. That State then proposed, and obstinately 
contended, contrary to the sense of, and unsupported 
by the other States, for an inequality of suffrage 
founded on numbers, or some such scale, which should 
give her, and certain other States, influence in the 
Union over the rest. Pursuant to that spirit which 
then characterized her, and uniform iU her conduct, 
the very second resolve is calculated expressly for that 
purpose, to give her a representation proportioned to 
her numbers ; as if the want of that, was the jaincipal 
defect in our original system, and this alteration the 
great mesuis of remedying the evils we had experi- 
enced under our present government. 

The object of Virginia, and other large States, to 
increase their power and influence over the others, did 
not escape observation ; the subject, however, was dis- 
cussed with great coolness, in the committee of the 
whole House (for the convention had resolved itself, 
into a committee of the whole, to deliberate upon the 
propositions delivered in by the honorable member 
from Virginia). Hopes were formed, that the farther 
we proceeded in the examination of the resolutions, 
the better the House might be satisfied of the impro- 
priety of adopting them, and that they would finally 
be rejected by a majority of the conamittee ; if, on the 
contrary, a majority should report in their favor, it was 
considered, that it would not preclude the members 
from bringing forward and submitting any other sys- 
tem to the consideration of the convention ; and ac- 
cordingly, while those resolves were the subject of 
discussion in the conmiittee of the whole House, a 
number of the members, who disapproved them, were 
preparing another system, such as they thought more 
It 



SECRET PROCEEDINGS 

conducive to the happiness and welfare of the States. 
The propositions originally submitted to the conven- 
tion having been debated, and undergone a variety of 
alterations, in the course of our proceedings, the com- 
mittee of the whole House, by a small majority, agreed 
to a report, which I am happy. Sir, to have in my 
power to lay before you ; it was as follows : 

^' 1. Resolved, That it is the opinion of this commit- 
tee, that a national government ought to be estab- 
lishedj consisting of a supreme legislative, judiciary, 
and executive. 

"2. That the legislative ought to consist of two 
branches. 

" 3. That the members of the first branch of the na- 
tional legislature ought to be elected by the people of 
the several States, for the term of three years, to re- 
ceive fixed stipends, by which they may be compen- 
sated for the devotion of their time to public service, 
to be paid out of the national treasury, to be ineligible 
to any office established by a particular State, or under 
the authority of the United States, except those par- 
ticularly belonging to the functions of the first branch, 
during the term of service, and under the national gov- 
ernment, for the space of one year after its expiration. 

" 4. That the members of the second brapch of the 
legislature ought to be chosen by the individual legis- 
latures ; to.be of the age of thirty years at least ; to hold 
their offices for a term sufficient to insure their inde- 
pendency, namely, seven years, one third to go out 
biennially ; to receive fixed stipends, by which they 
may be compensated for the devotion of their time to 
public service, to be paid out of the national treasury ; 
to be ineligible to any office by a particular State, or 
under the authority of the United States, except those 
peculiarly belonging to the functions of the second 



OF THE FEDERAL CONTEKTION.. 7 

branch, during the term of service^ and under the na- 
tional government, for the space of one year after its 
expiration. 

'^ 5. That each branch ought to possess the right of 
originating acts. 

'^ 6. That the national legislature ought to be em^ 
powered to enjoy the legislative rights vested in Con- 
gress by the confederation, and, moreover, to legislate 
in, all cases to which the separate States are incompe*- 
tent, or in which the harmoiiy of the tJnited States may 
be intemipted, by the exercise of individual legisla- 
tion ; to negative sdl laws passed by the several States, 
contravening, in the opinion of the legislature of the 
United States, the articles of union, or aiiy treaties 
subsisting und^ the authority of the Union. 

" 7. That the right of suffrage in the first branch of 
the national legislature, ought not to be according to 
the rule established in the articles of confederation, but 
according to some equitable rate of representation, 
namely, in proportion to the whole number of white, 
and other free citizens and inhabitants of every age, 
sex, and condition, including those bound to servitude 
for a term of years, and three-fifths of all other per- 
sons not comprehended in the foregoing description, 
except Indians not paying taxes, in each State. 

" 8. That the right of suffrage in the second branch 
of the national legislature, ought to be according to 
the rule established in the first. 

" 9. That a national executive be instituted, to con- 
sist of a single person, to be chosen by the national 
legislature for the term of seven years, with power to 
carry into execution the national laws, to appoint to 
offices in casfes not otherwise provided for, to be ineli- 
•gible a second time, and to be removable on impeach- 
ment and conviction of malpraetice of neglect of duty ; 



8 SECRET PROCEEDINGS 

to receive a fixed stipend, by which he may be com- 
pensated for the devotion of his time to public service, 
to be paid out of the national treasury. 

" 10. That the national executive shall have a right 
to negative any legislative act which shall not after- 
wards be passed, unless by two third parts of each 
branch of the national legislature. 

" 11. That a national judiciary be established, to 
consist of one supreme tribunal, the judges of which, 
to be appointed by the second branch of the national 
legislature, to hold their offices during good behaviour, 
and to receive punctually, at stated times, a fixed com- 
pensation for their services, in which no increase or 
diminution shall be made, so as to affect the persons 
actually in office at the time of such increase or dim- 
inution. 

'^ 12. That the national legislature be empowered to 
appoint inferior tribunals. 

" 13. That the jurisdiction of the national judiciary 
shall extend to cases which respect the collection of 
the national revenue ; cases arising under the laws of 
the United States ; impeachments of any national of- 
ficer, and questions which involve the national peace 
and harmony. 

" 14. Resolvedj That provision ought to be made for 
the admission of States lawfully arising within the 
limits of the United States, whether from a voluntary 
junction of government, territory, or otherwise, with 
the consent of a number of voices in the national 
legislature less than- the whole. 

" 15. Resolved, That provision ought to be made for 
the continuance of Congress, and their authority and 
privileges, until a given day after the reform of the 
articles of union shall be adopted, and for the comple- 
tion of all their engagements. 



OF THE FEDERAL CONVENTION. 9 

" 16. That a republican constitution, and its exist- 
ing laws, ought to be guarantied to each State by 
the United States. 

" 17. That provision ought to be made for the 
amendment of the articles of union whensoever it 
shall seem necessary. 

" 18. That the legislative, executive, aijd judiciary 
powers, within the several States, ought to be bound 
by oath to support the articles of the Union. 

" 19. That the amendments which shall be offered 
to the confederation by" this convention, ought, at a 
proper time or times, after the approbation of Con- 
gress, to be submitted to an assembly or assemblies, 
recommended by the legislatures, to be expressly 
chosenby the people, to consider and decide thereon." 

These propositions. Sir, were acceded to by a ma- 
jority of the members of the committee ; — a. system 
by which the large States were to have not only an 
inequality of suffrage in the first branch, but also the 
same inequality in the second branch, or Senate. 
However, it was not designed the second branch 
should consist of the same number as the first. It 
was proposed that the Senate should consist of twen- 
ty-eight members, formed on the following scale ; 
Virginia to send five, Pennsylvania and Massachusetts 
each four. South Carolina, North Carolina, Maryland, 
New York, and Connecticut two each, and the States 
of New Hampshire, Rhode Island, Jersey, Delaware, 
and Georgia each of them one ; upon this plan, the 
three large States, Virginia, Pennsylvania, and Massa- 
chusetts, would have thirteen senators out of twenty- 
eight, almost one half of the whole number. Fifteen 
senators were to be a quorum to proceed to .business ; 
those three States would, therefore, have thirteen out 



10 SECRET PROCEEDINGS 

of that quorum. Having this inequality in each 
branch of the legislature, it must be evident, Sir, 
that they would make what laws they pleased, how- 
ever injurious or disagreeable to the other States ; and 
that they would always prevent the other. States from 
making any laws, however necessary and proper, if 
not agreeable to the views of those three States. 
They were not only, Sir, by this system, to have 
such £01 undue superiority in making laws and reg- 
ulations for the Union, but to have the same su- 
periority in the appointment of the President, the 
judges, and all othet officers of government. Hencd, 
these three States would in reality have the appoint- 
ment of the President, judges, and all the other officers. 
This President and these judges, so appointed, we 
may be morally certain would be citizens of one of 
those three States ; and the President, as appointed 
by them, and a citizen of one of them, would espouse 
their interests and their views, when they came in 
competition with the views and interests of the other 
States. This President, so appointed by the three 
large States, and so unduly under their uifluence, was 
to have a negative upon every law that should be 
passed, which, if negatived by him, was not to take 
effect, unless assented to by two thirds of each branch 
of the legislature, a provision which deprived ten 
States of even the faintest shadow of liberty ; for if 
they, by a miraculous unanimity, having all their 
members present, should outvote the other three, and 
pass a law contrary to their wishes, those three large 
States need only procure the President to negative it, 
and thereby prevent a possibility of its ever taking 
effect, because the representatives of those three States 
would amount to much more than one third (almost 



OF THE FEDERAL CONVENTION. 11 

one half) of the representatives in each branch. And, 
Sir, this government so organized, with all this undue 
superiority in those three large States, was, as you 
see, to have a power of negativing the laws passed 
by every State legislature in the' Union. Whether, 
therefore, laws, passed by the legislature of Maryland, 
New York, Connecticut, Georgia, or of any other of 
the ten States, for the regulation of their internal 
police, should take effect and be carried into execution, 
was to depend on the good pleasure of the represen- 
tatives of Virginia, Pennsylvania, and Massachusetts. 
' This system of slavery, which bound hand and 
foot ten States in the Union, and placed them at the 
mercy of the other three, and under the most abject 
and servile subjection to them, was approved by a 
majority of the members of the convention, and re- 
ported by the committee. 

On this occasion the House will recollect, that the 
convention was resolved into a committee of the 
whole ; of this committee Mr. Gorham was chairman. 
The honorable Mr. Washington was then on the floor, 
in the same situation with the other members of the 
convention at large, to oppose any system he thought 
injurious, or to propose any alterations or amendments 
he thought beneficial. To these propositions, so re- 
ported by the committee, no opposition was given 
by that illustrious personage, or by the President of 
the State of Pennsylvania. They both appeared 
cordially to approve them^ and to give them their 
hearty concurrence ; yet this system I am confident, 
Mr. Speaker, there is not a member in this House 
would advocate, or who would hesitate one moment 
in saying it ought to be rejected. I mention this 
circumstance, in compliance with the duty I owe this 



12 SECRET PROCEEDINGS; 

honorable body, not with a view to lessen those ex-' 
alted characters, but to show how far the greatest * 
and best of men may be led to adopt very improper 
measures through error in judgment, State influence, 
or by other causes, and to show, that it is our duty 
not to suffer our eyes to be so far dazzled by the 
splendor of names, as to run blindfolded into what 
may be our destruction. 

Mr. Speaker, I revere those illustrious personages 
as much as any man here. No man has a higher' 
sense of the important services they have rendered 
this country. No member of the convention went 
there more disposed to pay a deference to their opin- 
ions ; but I should little have deserved the trust this 
State reposed in me, if I could have sacrificed its 
dearest interests to my complaisance for their senti- 
ments. 

When, contrary to our hopes, it was found, that a 
majority of the members of the convention had in 
the committee agreed to the system I have laid before 
you, we then thought it necessary to bring forward 
the propositions which such of us as had disap^ 
IHTOved the plan before had prepared. The members 
who prepared these resolutions were principally of 
the Connecticut, New- York, Jersey, Delaware, and 
Maryland delegations. The honorable Mr. Patterson, 
of the Jerseys, kid them before the convention; of 
these propositions I am in possession of a copy, which 
I shall beg leave to read to you. 

These propositions were referred to a committee 
of the whole House ; unfortunately the New Hamp- 
shire delegation had not yet arrived, and the sickness 
of a relation of the honorable Mr. McHenry obhged 
him still to be absent ; a cnreumstance. Sir, which I 



OF THE FEDERAL CONVENTION. 13 

considered much to be regretted, as Maryland thereby 
was represented by only two delegates, and they un- 
happily differed very widely in their sentiments. 

The result of the reference of these last proposi- 
tions to a committee was a speedy and hasty deter- 
mination to reject them. I doubt not. Sir, to those 
who consider them with attention, so sudden a re- 
jection will appear surprising ; but it may be proper 
to inform you, that, on our meeting in convention, it 
was soon found there were among us three parties, 
of very diflFerent sentiments and views. 

One party, whose object and wish it was to abolish 
and annihilate all State governments, and to bring 
forward one general government, over this extensive 
continent, of a monarchical nature, under certain re- 
strictions and limitations. Those who openly avowed 
this sentiment were, it is true, but few ; yet it is 
equally true, Sir, that there was a considerable num- 
ber, who did not openly avow it, who were by my- 
self, and many others of the convention, considered 
as being in reality favorers of that sentiment ; and, 
acting upon those principles, covertly endeavoming to 
carry into effect what they well knew openly and 
avowedly could not be accomplished. 

The second party was not for the abolition of the 
State governments, nor for the introduction of a 
monarchical government under any form ,• but they 
wished to establish such a system, as could give their 
own States undue power and influence in the gov- 
ernment over the other States. 

A third party was what I considered truly federal 
and republican ; this party was nearly equal in num- 
ber with the other two, and was composed of the 
delegations fix)m Connecticut, New York, New Jer- 



14 SECRET PROCEEDINGS 

sey, Delaware, and in part from Maryland ; also of 
some individuals from other representations. This 
party, Sir, were for proceeding upon terms of federal 
equality j they were for taking our present federal 
system as the basis of their proceedings, and, as far 
as experience had shown us that there were defects, 
to remedy those defects ; as far as experience had 
shown that other powers were necessary to the fed- 
eral government, to give those powers. They con- 
sidered this the object for which they were sent by 
their States, and what their States expected from 
them ; they ui^ed, that, if, after doing this, expe- 
rience should show that there still were defects in 
the system (as no doubt there would be), the same 
good sense, that induced this convention to be called, 
would cause the States, when they found it neces- 
sary, to call another ; and, if that convention should 
act with the same moderation, the members of it 
would proceed to correct such errors and defects as 
experience should have brought to light. That, by 
proceeding in this train, we should have a prospect 
at length of obtaining as perfect a system of federal 
government, as the nature of things would admit. On 
the other hand, if we, contrary to the purpose for 
which we were intrusted, considering ourselves as 
master-builders, too proud to amend our original gov- 
ernment, should demolish it entirely, and erect a new 
system of our own, a short time might show the new 
system as defective as the old, perhaps more so. 
Should a convention be found necessary again, if the 
members thereof, acting upon the same principles, 
instead of amending and correcting its defects, should 
aemolish that entirely, and bring forward a third 
system, that also might soon be found no better than 



OF THE FEDERAL CONVENTION. . 16 

either of the former ; and thus we might always re- 
main young in government, and always suffering the 
inconveniences of an incorrect, imperfect system. 

But, Sir, the favorers of monarchy, and those who 
wished the total abolition of State governments, well 
knowing, that a government founded on truly federal 
principles, the basis of which werfe the thirteen State 
governments, preserved in full force and energy, would 
be destructive of their views ; and knowing they 
were too weak in numbers openly to bring forward 
their system ; conscious also that the people of 
America would reject it if proposed to them,"^ — join- 
ed their interest with that party, who wished a sys- 
tem, giving particular States the power and influence 
over the others, procuring in return mutual sacrifices 
from them, in giving the government great and un- 
defined powers as to its legislative and executive ; 
well knowing, that, by departing from a federal sys- 
tem, they paved the way for their favorite object, 
the destruction of the State governments, and the 
introduction of monarchy. And hence, Mr. Speaker, 
I apprehend, in a great measure, arose the objections 
of those honorable members, Mr. Mason and Mr. 
Gerry. In every thing that tended to give the large 
States power over the smaller, the first of those gen- 
tlemen could not forget he belonged to the Ancient 
Dominion, nor could the latter forget, that he repre- 
sented Old Massachusetts. That part of the system, 
which tended to give those States power over the 
others, met with their perfect approbation ; but, when 
they viewed it charged with such powers, as would 
destroy all State governments, their own as well as 
the rest, — when they saw a president so constituted 
as to differ from a monarch scarcely but in name, and 



i 



16 SECRET PROCEEDINGS 

having it in his power to become such in reality when 
he pleased ; they being republicans and federalists, as 
far as an attachment to their own States would permit 
them, they warmly and zealously opposed those parts 
of the system. From these different sentiments, and 
from this combination of interest, I apprehend, Sir, 
proceeded the fate of what was called the Jersey reso- 
lutions, and the report made by the committee of the 
whole House. 

The Jersey propositions being thus rejected, the 
convention took up those reported by the committee, 
and proceeded to debate them by paragraphs. It was 
now that they, who disapproved the report, found it 
necessary to make a warm and decided opposition, 
which took place upon the discussion of the seventh 
resolution, which related to the inequality of repre- 
sentation in the first branch. Those who advocated 
this inequality urged, that, when the articles of con- 
federation were formed, it was only from necessity and 
expediency that the States were admitted each to have 
an equal vote ; but that our situation was now altered, 
and therefore those States who considered it contrary 
to their interest, would no longer abide by it. They 
said, no State ought to wish to have influence in gov- 
ernment, except in proportion to what it contributes to 
it ; that, if it contributes but little, it ought to haye 
but a small vote ,* that taxation and representation 
ought always to go together ; that if one State had 
sixteen times as many inhabitants as another, or was 
sixteen times as wealthy, it ought to have sixteen 
times as many votes ; that an inhabitant of Pennsyl- 
vania ought to have as much weight and consequence 
as an inhabitant of Jersey or Delaware ; that it was 
contrary to the feelings of the human mind ; what the 



OF THE FEDERAL CONVENTION. ■ 17 

large States would never submit to ; that the large 
States would have great objects in view, in which* 
they would never permit the smaller States to thwart 
them ; that equality of suflTrage was the rotten part of 
the constitution, and that this was a happy time to 
get clear of it. In fine, that it was the poison which 
contaminated our whole system, and the source of all 
the evils we experienced. 

This, Sir, is the substance of the arguments, if ar- 
guments they may be called, which were used in favor 
of inequality of suffrage. Those who advocated the 
equality of suffrage, took the matter up on the original 
principles of government ; they urged, that all men, 
considered in a state of nature, before any govern- 
ment is formed, are equally free and independent, no 
one having any right or authority to exercise power 
over another, and this without any regard to difference 
in personal strength, understanding, or wealth. That, 
.when such individuals enter into government, they 
have each a right to an equal voice in its first formation, 
and afterwards have each a right to an equal vote in 
«very matter which relates to their government. That^ 
if it could be done conveniently, they have a right to 
exercise it in person. Where it cannot be done in 
person, but for convenience representatives ar€( ap- 
pointed, to act for them, every person has a right to 
an equal vote in choosing that representative ; who is 
intrusted to do for the whole, that which the whole, 
if they could assemble, might do in person, and in the 
transaction of which, each would have an equal voice. 
That, if we were to admit, because a man was more 
wise, more strong, or more wealthy, he should be en- 
titled to more votes than another, it would be incon- 
sistent with the freedom and liberty of that other, and 
2* 



18 SECRET PROCEEDINGS 

would reduce him to slavery. Suppose, for instance, 
ten individuals in a state of nature, about to enter into 
government, nine of whom are equally wise, equally 
strong, and equally wealthy, the tenth is ten times as 
wise, ten times as strong, or ten times as rich ; if, for 
this reason, he is to have ten votes for each vote of 
either of the others, the nine might as well have no 
vote at all ; since, though the whole nine might assent 
to a measure, yet the vote of the tenth would coun- 
tervail, and set aside all their votes. If this tenth ap- 
proved of what they wished to adopt, it would be well, 
but if he disapproved, he could prevent it ; and in the 
same manner, he could carry into execution any meas- 
ure he wished, contrary to the opinion of all the others, 
he having ten votes, and the others altogether but 
nine. It is evident, that, on these principles, the nine 
would have no will or discretion of their own, but 
must be totally dependent on the will and discretion 
of the tenth ; to him they would be as absolutely 
slaves, as any negro is to his master. If he did not 
attempt to carry into execution any measures injurious 
to the other nine, it could only be said, that they had 
a good master ; they would not be the less slaves, be- 
cause they would be totally dependent on the will of 
another, and not on their own will. They might not 
feel their chains, but they would, notwithstanding, 
wear them ; and whenever their master pleased, he 
might draw them so tight as to gall them to the bone. 
Hence it was urged, the inequality of representation, 
or giving to one man more votes than another, on ac- 
count of his wealth, d&c, was altogether inconsistent 
with the principles of liberty ; and in the same pro- 
portion as it should be adopted, in favor of one or 
more, in that proportion are the others enslaved. It 



OF THE FEDERAL CONVENTION. 19 

was urged, that though every individual should have 
an equal voice in the government, yet, even the supe- 
rior wealth, strength, or understanding, would give 
great and undue advantages to those who possessed 
them. That wealth attracts respect and attention ; 
superior strength would cause the weaker and more 
feeble to be cautious how they offended, and to put. 
up with small injuries rather than to engage in an un* 
equal contest ; in like manner, superior understanding 
would give its possessor many opportunities of profit- 
ing at the expense of the more ignorant. 

Having thus established these principles, with re- 
spect to the rights of individuals in a state of nature, 
and what is due to each, on entering into government, 
(principles established by every writer on liberty,) they 
proceeded to show, that States, when once formed, are 
considered, with respect to each other, as individuals 
in a state of nature ; that, like individuals, each State is 
considered equally free and equally independent, the 
one having no right to exercise authority over the 
other, though more strong, more wealthy, or abound- 
ing with more inhabitants. That, when a number of 
States unite themselves under a federal government, 
the same principles apply to them, as when a number 
of individual men unite themselves under a State gov- 
ernment. That every argument which shows one 
man ought not to have more votes than another, be- 
cause he is wiser, stronger, or wealthier, proves that 
one State ought not to have more votes than another, 
because it is stronger, richer, or more populous. And, 
that by giving one State, or one or two States, more 
votes than the others, the others thereby are enslaved 
to such State or States, having the greater number of 
votes, in the same manner as in the case before put, 



20 SECRET PROCEEDINGS 

of individuals, when one has more votes than the 
others. That the reason why each individual man in 
forming a State government should have an equal vote, 
is because each individual, before he enters into gov- 
ernment, is equally free and independent. So each 
State, when States enter into a federal government, 
are entitled to an equal vote; because, before they 
entered into such federal government, each State was 
equally free, and equally independent. That adequate 
representation of men formed into a State government, 
consists in each man having an equal voice, either 
personally, or, if by representatives, that he should 
have an equal voice in choosing the representatives. 
So, adequate representation of States in a federal gov- 
ernment, consists in each State having an equal voice, 
either in person or by its representative, in every thing 
which relates to the federal government. That this 
adequacy of representation is more important in a fed- 
eral, than in a State government, because the mem- 
bers of a State government, the district of which is 
not very large, have generally such a common interest, 
that laws can scarcely be made by one part, oppressive 
to the others, v/ithout their suffering in common ; but 
the different States, composing an extensive federal 
empire, widely distant one from the other, may have 
interests so totally distinct, that the one part might be 
greatly benefited by what would be destructive to the 
other. 

They were not satisfied by resting it on principles ; 
they also appealed to history. They showed, that in 
the amphictyonic confederation of the Grecian cities, 
each city, however different in wealth, strength, and 
other circumstances, sent the same number of depu- 
ties, and had each an equal voice in every thing that 



OF THE FEDERAL CONVENTION/ 21 

related to the common concerns of Greece. It was 
shown, that in the seven provinces of the United Neth- 
erlands, and the confederated cantons of Switzerldhd, 
each canton and each province have an equal vote, 
although there are as great distinctions of wealth, 
strength, population, and extent of territory among 
those provinces and those cantons, as among these 
States. It was said, that the maxim, that taxation 
and representation ought to go together, was true so 
far, that no person ought to be taxed who is not repre- 
sented, but not in the extent insisted upon, to wit, that 
the quantum of taxation and representation ought to 
be the same ; on the contriary, the quantum of repre- 
sentation depends upon the quantum of freedom ; and 
therefore all, whether individual States, or individual 
men, who are equally free, have a right to equal rep- 
resentation. That to those who insist, that he who 
pays the greatest share of taxes ought to have the 
greatest number of votes, it is a sufficient answer to 
say, that this rule would be destructive of the liberty 
of the others, and would render them slaves to the 
more rich and wealthy. That if one man pays more 
taxes than another, it is because he has more wealth 
to be protected by government, and he receives greater 
benefits from the government. So if one State pays 
more to the federal government, it is because, as a 
State, she enjoys greater blessings from it ; she has 
more wealth protected by it, or a greater number of 
inhabitants, whose rights are secured, and who share 
its advantages. 

It was urged, that, upon these principles, the Penn- 
sylvanian, or inhabitant of a large State, was of as 
much consequence as the inhabitant of Jersey, Dela- 
ware, Maryland, or any other State. That his conse- 



28 * SECRET PB0C£9DIN6S 

quence was to be decided by his situation in his own 
State ; that if he was there as free, if he had as great 
shaite in the forming of his own government, and in 
the making and executing its laws, as the inhabitants 
of those other States, then was he equally important, 
and of equal consequence. Suppose a confederation 
of States had never been adopted, but every State had 
remained absolutely in its independent situation, no 
person could with propriety say, that the citizen of the 
large State was not as important as the citizen of the 
smaller ; the confederation of the States cannot alter 
the case. It was said, that in all transactions between 
State and State, the freedom, independence, impor- 
tance, and consequence, even the individuality of each 
citizen of the different States, might with propriety be 
said to be swallowed up, or concentrated, in the inde- 
pendence, the freedom, and the individuality of the 
State of which they are citizens. That the thirteen 
States are thirteen distinct political individual exist- 
ences, as to each other ; that the federal government 
is, or ought to be, a government over these thirteen 
political individual existences, which form the members 
of that government ; and that, as the largest State is 
only a single individual of this government, it ought 
to have only one vote ; the smallest State, also being 
one individual member of this government, ought also 
to have one vote. To those who urged, that for the 
States to have equal suflQrage was contrary to the feel- 
ings of the human heart, it was answered^ that it was 
admitted to be contrary to the feelings of pride and 
ambition, but those were feelings which ought not to 
be gratified at the expense of freedom. 

It was urged, that the position, that great States 
would have great objects in view, in which they 



OF THE FEDERAL CONVENTION. 23 

would not suffer the less States to thwart them, was 
one of the strongest reasons why inequality of repre- 
sentation ought not to be admitted. If those great 
objects were not inconsistent with the interest of the 
less States, they would readily concur in them ; but 
if they were inconsistent with the interest of a major- 
ity of the States composing the government, in that 
case two or three States ought not to have it in their 
power to aggrandize themselves, at the expense of all 
the rest. To those who alleged, that equality of suf- 
frage in our federal government, was the poisonous 
source fropi which all our misfortunes flowed, it wa3 
answered, that the allegation was not founded in fact ; 
that equality of suffrage had never been complained 
of by the States, as a defect in our federal system ; 
that, among the eminent writers, foreigners and others, 
who had treated of the defects g£ our confederation, 
and proposed alterations, none had proposed an altera- 
tion in this part of the system ; and members of the 
convention, both in and out of Congress, who advo- 
cated the equality of suffrage, called upon their oppo- 
nents, both in and out of Congress, and challenged 
them to produce one single instance where a bad 
measure had been adopted, or a good measure had 
failed of adoption, in consequence of the States having 
an equal vote ; on the contrary, they urged, that all 
our evils flowed from the T^ant of power in the federal 
head, and that, let the right of suffrage in the States 
be altered in any manner whatever, if no greater pow- 
ers were given to the government, the same incon- 
veniences would continue.^ 

It was denied that the equality of suffrage was 
originally agreed to on principles of necessity or ex- 
pediency ; on the contrary, that it was adopted on the 



24 SECRET PROCEEDINGS 

principles of the rights of men and the rights of 
States, which were then well known, and which 
then influejaced our (Conduct, although now they seem 
to be forgotten. For this, the Journals of Congress 
were appealed to ; it was from them shown, that 
when the committee of Congress reported to that 
body the articles of confederation, the very first arti- 
cle, which became the subject of discussion, was that 
respecting equality of suffrage. That Vu^inia pro- 
posed divers modes of suffrage, all on the principle of 
inequality, which were almost unanimously rejected ; 
that on the question for adopting the article, it passed, 
Virginia being the only State which voted in the 
negative. That, after the articles of confederation 
were submitted to the States, by them to be ratified, 
almost every State proposed certain amendments, 
which they instructed their delegates to endeavour 
to obtain before ratification, and that among all the 
amendments proposed, not one State, not even Vir- 
ginia, proposed an amendment of that article, securing 
the equality of suffrage, — the most convincing proof 
it was agreed to and adopted, not from necessity, but 
upon a full conviction, that, according to the princi- 
ples of free government, the States had a right to 
that equality of suffrage. 

But, Sir, it was to no purpose that the futility of 
their objections were shown, when driven from the 
pretence, that the equality of suffrage had been orig- 
inally agreed to on principles of expediency and ne- 
cessity; the representatives of the large States per- 
sisting in a declaration, that they would never agree 
to admit the smaller States to an equality of suffrage. 
In answer to this, they were informed, and informed 
in terms the most strong and energetic that could 



OF THE FEDERAL CONVENTION. 26 

possibly be used, that we never would agree to a 
system giving them the undue influence and supe- 
riority they proposed. That we would risk every 
possible consequence. That from anarchy and con- 
fusion, order might arise. That slavery was the 
worst that could ensue, and we considered the sys- 
tem proposed to be the most complete, most abject 
system of slavery that the wit of man ever devised, 
under the pretence of forming a government for free 
States. That we never would submit tamely and 
servilely, to a present certain evil, in dread of a fu- 
ture, which might be imaginary ; that we were sen- 
sible the eyes of our country and the world were 
upon us. That we would not labor under the im- 
putation of being unwilling to form a strong and 
energetic federal government ; but we would pub- 
lish the system which we approved, and also that 
which we opposed, and leave it to our country, and 
the world at large, to judge between us, who best 
understood the rights of free men and free States, 
and who best advocated them ; and to the same tri- 
bunal we would submit, who ought to be answerable 
for all the consequences, which might arise to the 
Union from the convention breaking up, without pro- 
posing any system to their constituents. During this 
debate we were threatened, that if we did not agree 
to the system proposed, we never should have an op- 
portunity of meeting in convention to deliberate on 
another, and thi^ was frequently urged. In answer, 
we called upon them to show what was to prevent it, 
and from what quarter was our danger to proceed ; 
was it from a foreign enemy ? Our distance from 
Europe, and the political situation of that country, 
left us but little to fear. Was there any ambitious 
3 



26 SECRET PROCEEDINGS 

State or States, who, in violotioii of eitery sacred 
obligation, w^s preparing to enslave the other States, 
and raise itself to consequence on the ruin of th^ 
others ? Or was there any such ambitious individual ? 
We did not apprehend it to be the case -, but suppose 
it to be true, it rendered it the more necessary, that 
we should sacredly guard against a system, which 
might enable all those ambitious views to be carried 
into effect, even under the sanction of the constitu* 
tiou and government. In fine, Sir, all these threats 
were treated with contempt, and they were told, that 
we apprehended but one reason to prevent th^ State9 
meeting again in .convention ; that, when they dis* 
covered the part this convention had acted, and how 
much its members were abusing the trust reposed in 
them, the States would never trust another conven- 
tion. At length. Sir, after every argument had . been 
exhausted by the advocates of equality of representa^ 
tion, the question was called, when a majority decid- 
ed in favor of the inequality ; Massachusetts, Penn- 
sylvania, Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolinj^, 
and Georgia voting for it ; Connecticut, New York, 
New Jersey, and Delaware against it ; Maryland di- 
vided. It may be thought surprising. Sir, that Geor- 
gia, a State now small and comparatively trifling in 
the Union, should advocate this system of unequal 
representation, giving up her present equality in the 
federal government, and sinking herself almost to 
total insignificance in the scale ; but. Sir, it must be 
considered, that Georgia has the most extensive ter- 
ritory in the Union, being larger than the whole 
island of Great Britain, and thirty times as large as 
Comiecticut. This system being designed to pieserire 
to the States their whole territory unbrokeq, ^pd %q 



OF THE FEDERAL CONVi;l«TION. j87 

prevent the erection of new States within the territory 
of any of them, Georgia looked forward when, her 
population being increased in some measure propor- 
tioned to her territory, she should rise in the scale, 
and give law to the other States, and hence we found 
the delegation of Georgia warmly advocating the 
proposition of giving the States unequal representa- 
tion. Next day the question came on, with respect 
to the inequality of representation in the second 
branch, but little debate took place ; the subject had 
been exhausted on the former question. On the votes 
being taken, Massachusetts, Pennsylvania^ Virginia, 
North Carolina, and South Carolina,^ voted for the 
inequality. Connecticut, New York, New Jersey, 
Delaware,^ and Maryland * Were in the negative. 
Georgia had only two representatii^es on the floor, 
one of whom (not, I believe, because he was against 
the measure, but from a conviction, that we would 
go home, and thereby dissolve the convention, be- 
fore we would give up the question,) voted also in 
the negative, by which that State was divided. 
Thus, Sir, on this great and important part of the 
system, the convention being equally divided, five 
States for the measure, five against, and one divided, 
there was a total stand, and we did not seem very 
likely to proceed any further. At length, it was pro- 
posed, that a select committee should be balloted for, 

composed of a member from each State, which com- 

' ' t ' ■ ■ ■ ■ ■ . ■ .. 1 ■ . 

^ On this questiori, Mr. Martin wm the only delegate for Maryland pres- 
ent, which circumstance secured the State a negative. Immediately afler 
the question bad been taken, and the President had declared the Totet, 
Mr. Jenifer came into the convention, when Mr. King, from Massachusetts, 
valuing himself on Mr. Jenifer to divide the State of Maryland on this 
question, as he had on the former, requested of the President that the 
question might be put again 3 boweTor, the motion was too eztraordinaiy in 
its nature to meet with success. 



28 SECRET PROCEEDINGS 

mittee should endeavour to devise some mode of con- 
ciliation or compromise. I had the honor to be on 
that committee ; we met, and discussed the subject 
of difference ; the one side insisted on the inequality 
of suffrage in both branches, the other insisted on 
the equahty in both ; eadh party was tenacious of 
their sentiments. When it was found, that nothing 
could induce us to yield to the inequality in both 
branches, they at length proposed, by way of com- 
promise, if we would accede to their wishes as to the 
first branch, they would agree to the equal repre- 
sentation in the second. To this it was answered, 
that there was no merit in the fuoposal ; it was only 
consenting, after they had struggled to put both their 
feet on our necks, to take one of them off, provided 
we would consent to let them keep the other on ; 
when they knew, at the same time, that they could 
hot put one foot on our necks, unless we would con- 
sent to it ; and that, by being permitted to keep on 
that one foot, they should afterwards be able to place 
the other foot on whenever they pleased. 

They were also called on, to inform us what se- 
curity they could give us, should we agree to this 
compromise, that they would abide by the plan of 
government formed upon it, any longer that it suited 
their interests, or they found it expedient. " The 
States have a right to an equality of representation. 
This is secured to us by our present articles of con- 
federation ; we are in possession of this right ; it is 
now to be torn from us. What security can you give 
us, that, when you get the power the proposed system 
will give you, when you have men and money, that 
you will not force from the States that equality of 
suffrage in the second branch, which you now deny 



OF THE FEDERAL CONVENTION. 29 

to be their right, and only give up from absolute ne- 
cessity? Will you tell us. we ought to trust you, 
because you now enter into a solemn compact with 
us ? This you have done before, and now treat with 
the utmost contempt. Will you now make an appeal 
to the Supreme Being, and call on him to guarantee 
your observance of this, compact ? The same you 
have formerly done, for your observance of the arti- 
cles of confederation, which you are now violating 
in the most wanton manner. 

" The same reasons, which you now urge for de- 
stroying our present federal government, may be urged 
for abolishing the system, which you now propose 
to adopt ; and, as the method pjpescribed by the arti- 
cles of confederation is now totally disregarded by 
you, as little regard may be shown by you to the 
rules prescribed for the amendment of the new sys- 
tem, whenever, having obtained power by the gov- 
ernment,„you shall hereafter be pleased either to dis- 
card it entirely, or so to alter it as to give yourselves 
all that superiority, which you have now contended 
for, and to obtain which you have shown yourselves 
disposed to hazard the Union." Such, Sir, was the 
language used on that occasion, and they were told, 
that, as we could not possibly have a stronger tie on 
them, for their observance of the new system, than 
we had for their observance of the articles of confed- 
eration, which had proved totally insuflScient, it would 
be wrong and imprudent, to confide in them. It was 
further observed, that the inequality of the repre- 
sentation would be daily increasing. That many 
of the States, whose territory wqa confined, askd 
whose population was at this time large in proportion 
to their territory, would probably, twenty, thirty, or 
, 3* 



30 SECRET PROCEEDINGS 

forty years hence, have no more representatives than 
at the introduction of the government ; whereas, the 
States having extensive territory, where lands are to 
be procured cheap, would be daily increasing in the 
number of their inhabitants, not only from propagation, 
but from the emigration of the inhabitants of the other 
States, and would have soon double, or perhaps treble 
the number of representatives that they are to have at 
first, and thereby enormously increase their influence 
in the national councils. However, the majority of 
the select committee at length agreed to a series of 
propositions, by way of compromise, part of which re- 
lated to the representation in the first branch, nearly 
as the isystem is now published, and part of them to 
the second branch, securing, in that, equal representa- 
tion, — and reported them as a compromise, upon the 
express terms, that they were wholly to be adopted, 
or wholly to be rejected. Upon this compromise, a 
great number of the members so far engaged them- 
selves, that, if the system was progressed upon agree- 
ably to the terms of compromise, they would lend it 
their names, by signing it, and would not actively op- 
pose it, if their States should appear inclined to adopt 
it. Some, however, in which number was myself, 
who joined in the report, and agreed to proceed upon 
those principles, and see what kind of a system would 
ultimately be formed upon it, yet reserved to them- 
selves, in the most explicit manner, the right of finally 
giving a solemn dissent to the system, if it was thought 
by them inconsistent with the freedom and happiness 
of their country. This, Sir, will account why the 
members of the convention so generally signed their 
names to the system ; not because they thought it a 
proper one ; not because they thoroughly approved, or 



OF THE FEDERAL CONVENTION. 31 

were unanimous for it ; but because they thought it 
better than the system attempted to be forced upon 
them. This report of the select committee was, after 
long dissension, adopted by a majority of the conven- 
tion, and the system was proceeded in accordingly. I 
believe near a fortnight, perhaps more, was spent in 
the discussion of this business, during which we were 
on the verge of dissolution, scarce held together by 
the strength of a hair, though the public papers were 
announcing our extreme unanimity. 

Mr. Speaker, I think it nay duty to observe, that, 
during this struggle to prevent the large States from 
having all power in their hands, which had nearly ter- 
minated in a dissolution of the convention, it did not 
appear to me, that either of those illustriousjcharacters, 
the honorable Mr. Washington or the President of the 
State of Pennsylvania, was disposed to favor the claims 
of the smaller States, against the undue superiority at- 
tempted by the large States ; on the contrary, the hon-^ 
orable President of Pennsylvania was a member of the 
committee of compromise, and there advocated the right 
of the large States to an inequality in both branches, 
and only ultimately conceded it in the second branch 
on the principle of conciliation, when it was found no 
other terms would be accepted. This, Sir, I think it 
my duty to mention, for the consideration of those, 
who endeavour to prop up a dangerous and defective 
system by great names. Soon after this period, the 
honorable Mr. Yates and Mr. Lansing, of New York, 
left us ; they had uniformly opposed the system, and, 
I believe, despairing of getting a proper one brought 
forward, or of rendering any real service, they returned 
no more. The propositions reported by the committee 
of the whole House having been fully discussed by 



32 ' SECRET PROCEEDINGS 

the convention, and, with many alterations,- having 
been agreed' to by a majority, a committee of five were 
appointed to detail the system, according to the prin- 
ciples contained in what had been agreed to by that 
maymtj ; this was likely to require some time, and 
the convention adjourned for eight or ten days. Be- 
fore the adjournment, I moved for liberty to be given 
to the different members to take correct copies of the 
jpropositions, to which the convention had then agreed, 
in order that, during the recess of the convention, we 
might have an opportunity of considering them, and, 
if it should be thought that any alterations or amend- 
ments were necessary, that we might be prepared, 
against the convention met, to bring them forward for 
discussion. But, Sir, the same spirit^ which caused 
our doors to be shut, our proceedings to be kept secret, 
our journals to be locked up, and every avenue, as far 
as possible, to be shut to public information, jurevailed 
also in this case ; and the proposal, so reasonable and 
necessary, was rejected by a majority of the conven- 
tion ; thereby precluding even the members themselves 
from the necessary means of information and delibera- 
tion on the important business in which they were 
engaged. 

It has been observed, Mr. Speaker, by my honora- 
ble colleagues, that the debate respecting the mode of 
representation, was productive of considerable warmth. 
This observation is true. But, Sir, it is equally true, 
that, if we could have tamely and servilely consented 
to be bound in chains, and meanly condescended to 
assist in riveting them fast, we might have avoided 
all that warmth, and have proceeded with as much 
calmness and coolness as any Stoic could have wished. 

Having thus, Sir, given the honorable members of 



OF TH£ FEDERAL CONVEJ^TIOJ^. 33 

this House a short history of some interesting partis of 
our proceedings, I shall beg leave to take up the system 
published by the convention, and shall request your 
indulgence, while I make some observations on dif- 
ferent parts of it, and give you such further inftnrma- 
tion as may be in my power. [Here Mr. Martin read 
the first section of the first article, and then pro- 
ceeded.] With respect to this part of the system, Mr. 
Speaker, there, was a diversity of sentiment. Those 
who were for two branches in the legislature, a House 
of Representatives and a Senate, urged the necessity of 
a second branch to serve as a check upon the first, and 
used all those trite and common-place arguments which 
may be proper and just, when applied to the formation 
of a State government, over individuals variously distin- 
guished in their habits and manners, fortune and rank ; 
where a body chosen in a select manner, respectable 
for their wealth and dignity^ may be necessary, fre- 
quently, to prevent the hasty and rash measures of a 
representation more popular. But, on the other side, 
it was urged, that none of those arguments could with 
propriety be applied to the formation of a federal gov- 
ernment over a number of independent States ; that it 
is the State governments which are to watch over and 
protect the rights of the individual, whether rich or 
poor, or of moderate circumstances, and in which the 
democratic and aristocratic influence or principles are 
to be so blended, modified, and checked, as to prevent 
oppression and injury ; that the federal government is 
to guard and protect the States and then: rights, and 
to regulate their common concerns ; that a federal 
government is formed by the States, as States, that. is, 
in their sovereign Capacities, in the same manner as 
treaties and alliances are formed ; that a sovereignty, 



34 S£CRET PROCEEDINGS 

considered as such, cannot be said to have jarring in- 
terests or principles, the one aristocratic, and the other 
democratic ; but that the principles of a sovereignty, 
considered as a sovereignty, are the same, whether 
that sovereignty is monarchical, aristocratical, demo- 
cratical, or mixed ; that the history of mankind doth 
not furnish an instance, from its earliest period to the 
present time, of a federal government constituted 
of two distinct branches ; that the members of the 
federal government, if appointed by the States in their 
State capacities, that is, by their legislatures, as they 
ought, would be select in their choice, and, coming 
from diflFerent States, having diflFerent interests and 
views, this difference of interests and views would 
always be a sufficient check over. the whole. And it 
was shown, that even Adams, who, the reviewers have 
justly observed, appears to be as fond of checks and 
balances as Lord Chesterfield of the Graces, even he 
declares, that a coimcil consisting of one branch has 
always been found sufficient in a federal government. 
It was urged, that the government we were form- 
ing was not in reality a federal, but a national govern- 
ment ; not founded on the principles of the preserva- 
tion, but the abolition or consolidation of all State 
governments ; that we appeared totally to have forgot 
the business for which we were sent, and the situation 
of the country for which we were preparing our sys- 
tem ; that we had not been sent to form a government 
over the inhabitants of America, considered as indi- 
viduals ; that as individuals, they were all subject to 
their respective State governments, which governments 
would still remain, though the federal government 
should be dissolved ; that the system of government 
we were intrusted to prepare, was a government over 



OF THE FEDERAL CONVENTION. 35 

tbeee thirteen States ; but that, in our proceedings, we 
adopted principles which would be right and proper, 
only on the supposition that there were no State gov- 
ernments at all, but that all the inhabitants of this 
extensive continent were, in their individual capacity, 
without government, and in a state of nature ] that, 
accordingly, the system proposes the legislature to 
consist of two branches, the one to be drawn from 
the people at large, inmiediately in their individual 
capacity, the other to be chosen in a more select 
manner, aa a check upon the first. It is, in its very 
introduction, declared to be a compact between the 
people of the United States, as individuals ; and it is 
to be ratified by the people at large, in their capacity 
as individuals ,* all which it was s^d would be quite 
right and proper, if th^re wer^ no State governments, 
if all the people of this continent were in a state of 
nature, and we were forming one national government 
for them as individuals; and is nearly the same as 
was done in most of the States when they formed 
their governments over the people who compose 
them. 

Whereas it was urged, that the principles on which 
a federal government over States ought to be con-' 
structed and ratified, are the reverse ; that instead of 
the legislature consisting of two branches, one branch 
was sufficient, whether examined by the dictates of 
reason, or the experience of ages ; that the represeo* 
tation, instead of being drawn from the people at large, 
as individuals, ought to be drawn firom the States, as 
States, in their sovereign capacity ; that, in a federal 
government, the parties to the compact are not the 
people, as individuals, but the States, as States ; and 
that it is by the States, as Stat^, in their sovereign 



36 SECRET PROCEEDINGS * 

capacity, that the system of government ought to be 
ratified, and not by the people, as mdividuals. 

It was further said, that, in a federal government 
over States equally free, sovereign, and independent, 
every State ought to have an equal share in making 
the federal laws or regulations, in deciding upon 
them, and in carrying them into execution ; neither of 
which was the case in this system, but the reverse ; 
the States not having an equal voice in the legislature, 
nor in the appointment of the executive, the judges, 
and the other officers of government. It was in- 
sisted, that, in the whole system, there was but one 
federal feature, — the appointment of the senators by 
the States in their sovereign capacity, that is, by their 
legislatures; and the equality of suffrage in that branch ; 
but it was said, that this feature was only federal in 
appearance. 

To prove this, (and the Senate as constituted could 
not be a security for the protection and preservation of 
the State governments,) and that the senators could not 
be justly considerejd the representatives of the States, 
as States, it was observed, that, upon just principles of 
representation, the representative ought to speak the 
sentiments of his constituents, and ought to vote in the 
same manner that his constituents would do, (as far as 
he can judge,) provided his constituents were acting in 
person, and had the same knowledge and information 
with himself; and, therefore, that the representative 
ought to be dependent on his constituents, and answer- 
able to them ; that the connexion between the represent- 
ative and the represented ought to be as near and as 
close as possible. According to these principles, Mr. 
Speaker, in this State it is provided by its constitution, 
that the representatives iii Cbngress shall be chosen an- 



OF THE FEDERAL CONVENTION. 37 

Dually, shall be paid by the State, and shall be subject 
to recall even within the. year; so cautiously has our 
constitution guarded against an abuse of the trast re- 
posed in our representatives in the federal government ; 
whereas, by the third and sixth section of the first ar- 
ticle of this new system, the sen&tors are to be chosen 
for six years, instead of being chosen annually ; instead 
of being paid by their States, who send them, they, in 
conjunction with"^ the other branch, are to pay them- 
selves, out of the treasury of the United States ; and are 
not liable to be recalled during the period for which they 
are chosen. Thus, Sir, for six years the senators are 
rendered totally and absolutely independent of their 
States, of whom they ought to be the representatives, 
without any bond or tie between them. During that 
time, they may join in measures ruinous and destruc- 
tive to their States, even such as should totally anni- 
hilate their State governments, and their States cannot 
recall them, nor exercise any control over them. 

Another consideration, Mr. Speaker, it was thought 
ought to have great weight, to prove that the smaller 
States cannot depend 6n the Senate for the presehra- 
tion of their rights, either against large and ambitious 
States, or against an ambitious and aspiring President. 
The Senate, Sir, is so constituted, that they are not 
only to compose one branch of the legislature, but, by 
the second section of the second article, they are to 
compose a privy council for the President ; hence, it 
will be necessary, that they should be, in a great 
measure, a permanent body, constantly residing at the , 
seat of government. Seven years are esteemed for the 
life of a man ; it can hardly be supposed, that a sen- 
ator, especially from the States remote from the seat 
of empire, will accept of an appointment whtch must 
4 



38 SECRET PROCEEDII^GS 

estrange him for six years from his State, without 
giving up, to a great degree, his prospects in his 
own State. If he has a family, he will take his fam- 
ily with him to the place where the government shall 
be fixed ,* that will become his home, and there is 
every reason to expect, that his future views and pros- 
pects will centre in the favors and emoluments of the 
general government, or of the government of that 
State where the seat of empire is established. In 
either case, he is lost to his own State. If he places 
hijB future prospects in the lavors and emoluments of 
the general government, he will become the dependent 
and creature of the President, as the system enables a 
senator to be appointed to offices, and, without the 
nomination of the President, no appointment can take 
place ; as such, he will favor the wishes of the Presi- 
dent, and concur in his measures ; who, if he has no 
ambitious views of his own to gratify, may be too fa- 
vorable to the ambitious views of the large States, 
who will have an undue share in his original appoint- 
ment, and on whom he will be more dependent after- 
wards than on the States which are smaller. If the 
senator places his future prospects in that State where 
the seat of empire is fixed, from that time he will be, 
in every question wherein its particular interest may 
be concerned, the representative of that State, not of 
his own. 

But even this provision, apparently for the security 
of the State governments, inadequate as it is, is entire- 
ly left at the mercy of the general government ; for, 
by the fourth section of the first article, it is expressly 
provided, that the CJongress shall have a power to make 
and alter all regulations concerning the time and manner 
of holding elections for senators ; a provision exj»:essly 



i 



OF THE FEDERAL CONVENTION. 39 

looking forward to, and, I have no doubt, designed for, 
the utter ea^nction and abolition of all State govern- 
ments. Nor will this, I believe, be doubted by any 
person, when I inform you, that some of the warm 
advocates and patrons of the system, in convention^ 
strenuously opposed the choice of the senators by the 
State legislatures; insisting, that the State govern- 
ments ought not to be introduced in any manner, so 
as to be component parts of, or instruments for carry- 
ing into execution, the general government. Nay, so 
far were the friends of the system from pretending that 
they meant it, or considered it as a federal system, that 
on the question being proposed, '^ that a union of the 
States, iherely federal, ought to be the sole object of 
the exercise of the powers vested in the convention," 
it was negatived by a majority of the members, and it 
was resolved " that a national government ought to be 
formed." Afterwards the word " national " was struck 
out by them, because they thought the word might 
tend to alarm ; and although, now, they who advocate^ 
the system pretend to call themselves federalists, in 
convention the distinction was quite the reverse ; those 
who opposed the system were there considered and 
styled the federal party, those who advocated it, the 
antifederal. 

Viewing it as a national^, not a federal government, 
as calculated and designed not to protect and preserve, 
but to abolish and annihilate the State governments, 
it was opposed for the following reasons. It was said, 
that this continent was much too extensive for one 
national government, which should have sufficient 
power and energy to pervade and hold in obedience 
and subjection all its parts, consistent with the enjoy- 
ment and preservation of liberty ; that the genius and 



40 SECRET PROCEEDINGS 

habits of the people of America were opposed to such 
a goyemment. That, during their connexiou with 
Great Britain, they had been accustomed to have all 
their concerns transacted within a narrow circle, dieir 
colonial district ; they had been accustomed to have 
their seats of government near them, to which they 
might have access, without much inconvenience, when 
their business should require it. That, at this time, 
we find, if a county is rather large, the people complain 
of the inconvenience, and clamor for a division of their 
county, or for a removal of the place where their courts 
are held, so as to render it more central and conven- 
ient. Thatj in those States, the territory of which is 
extensive, as soon as the population increases remote 
from the seat of government, the inhabitants are urgent 
for the removal of the seat of their, government, or to 
be erected into a new State. As a proof of this, the 
inhabitants of the western parts of Yirginia and North 
Carolina, of Vermont and the province of Maine, were 
instances ; even the inhabitants of the western parts 
of Pennsylvania, who, it is said, already seriously look 
forward to the time when they shall either be erected 
into a new State, or have their seat of government 
removed to the Susquehanna. If the inhabitants of 
the different States consider it as a grievance to attend 
a county court, or the seat of their own government, 
when a little inconvenient, can it be supposed they 
would ever submit to have a national government 
established, the seat of which would be more than a 
thousand miles removed from some of them ? 

It was insisted, that governments of a republican na- 
ture are those best calculated to preserve the freedom 
and happiness of the citizen ; that governments of this 
kind are only <;alculated for a territory but small in its 



OF THE FEDERAL CONVENTION. 41 

extent ; that the only method by which an extensive 
continent like America could be connected and united 
together, consistent with the principles of freedom, must 
be by having a number of strong and energetic State 
governments for securing and protecting the rights of 
individuals forming those governments, and for regu- 
la.ting all their concerns ; and a strong, energetic fed* 
eral government over those States, for the protection 
and preservation, and for regulating the common con- 
cerns of the State. It was further insisted, that, even 
if it was possible to effect a total abolition of the State 
governments at this time, and to establish one general 
government over the people of America, it could not 
long subsist, but in a little time would again be broken 
into a variety of governments of a smaller extent^ 
similar, in some manner, to the jNresent situation of 
this continent ; the principal difference, in all proba- 
bility, would be, that the governments so established, 
being affected by some violent convulsion, might not 
be formed on principles so favorable to liberty as those 
of our present State governments. That this ought to 
be an important consideration to such of the States 
as had excellent governments, which was the case 
with Maryland and most others, whatever it might be 
to persons, who, disapproving of their particular State 
government, would be willing, to hazard every thing 
to overturn and destroy it. These reasons. Sir, influ- 
enced me to vote against two branches in the legisla- 
ture, and against every part t)f the system which was 
repugnant to the principles of a federal government. 
Nor was there a single argument urged, or reason as- 
signed, which to my mind was satisfactory, to prove, 
that a good government on federal principles was un- 
attainable ; the whole of their arguments only proving, 
4* 



43 SECRET PROCEEDIl^GS 

what none of us controverted, that our federal govern- 
ment, as originally formed, was defective, and wanted 
amendment. However, a majority of the convention 
hastily and inconsiderately, without condescending to 
make a fair trial, in their great wisdom decided, that a 
kind of government, which a Montesquieu and a Price 
have declared the best calculated of any to preserve 
internal liberty; and to enjoy external strength and 
security, and the only one by which a lai^e continent 
can be connected and united, consistently with the 
principles bf liberty, was totally impracticable ; and 
they acted accordingly. 

With respect to that part of the second section of 
the first article, which relates to the apportionment of 
representation and direct taxation, there were con- 
siderable objections made to it, besides the great ob- 
jection of inequality. It was urged, that no principle 
could justify taking slaves into computation in ajqwr- 
tioning the number of representatives a State should 
have in the government. That it involved the ab- 
surdity of increasing the power of a State in making 
laws for freemen in proportion as that State violated 
the rights of freedom. That it might be proper to 
take slaves into consideration, when taxes were to be 
apportioned, because it had a tendency to discourage 
slavery; but to take them into account in giving 
representation tended to encourage the slave-trade, and 
to make it the interest of the States to continue that 
infamous traffic. That slaves could not be taken into 
account as men or citizens, because they were not 
admitted to the rights of citizens, in the States which 
adopted or continued slavery. If they were to be 
taken into account as property, it was asked, what 
peculiar circmnstance should render this property, (of 



1 



OF THE FEDERAL CONVENTION. 43 

all Others the most odious in its nature,) entitled to the 
high privilege of conferring consequence and power in 
the government to its possessors, rather than any other 
property? and why slaves should, as property, be 
taken into account, rather than horses, cattle, mules, 
or any other species ? and it was observed by an hon- 
orable member from Massachusetts, that he considered 
it as dishonorable and humiliating to enter into com- 
pact with the slaves of the . Southern States, as it 
would with the horses and mules of the Eastern. It 
was also objected, that the numbers of representatives 
appointed by this section, to be sent by the particular 
States to compose the first legislature, were not pre- 
cisely agreeable to the rule of representation adopted 
by this system, and that the numbers in this section 
are artfully lessened for the latge States, while the 
gtaaller States have their" full proportion, in order to 
prevent the undue influence which the large States 
will have in the government from being too apparent ,• 
and I think, Mr. Speaker, that this objection is well 
founded. I have taken some pains to obtain informa- 
tion of the number of freemen and slaves in the dif- 
ferent States, and I have reason to believe, that, if the 
estimate was now taken, which is directed, and one 
delegate to be sent for every thirty thousand in- 
habitants, Virginia would have at least twelve dele- 
gates, Massachusetts eleven, and Pennsylvania ten, 
instead of the number stated in this section ; whereas 
the other States, I believe, would not have more than 
the number there allowed them, nor would Georgia, 
most probably, at present, send more than two. If I 
am right, Mr. Speaker, upon the enumeration being 
made, and the representation being apportioned accord- 
ing to the rule prescribed, the whole number of dele- 



44 SECREt PROCEEDINGS 

gates would be seventy-one, thirty-six of which would 
be a quorum to do business ; the delegates of Virginia, 
Massachusetts, and Pennsylvania, would amount to 
thirty-three of that quorum. Those three States 
will, therefore, have much more than equal power and 
influence in making the laws and regulations, which 
are to affect this continent, and will have a moral cer- 
tainty of preventing any laws or regulations which 
they disapprove, although they might be thought ever 
so necessary by a great majority of the States. It was 
further objected, that even if the States who had most 
inhabitants- ought to have a greater number of dele- 
gates^ yet the number of delegates ought not to be in 
exact proportion to the number of inhabitants, because 
the influence and power of those States whose dele- 
gates are numerous, will be greater, when compared 
to the influence and power of the other States, than 
the proportion which the mmibers of their delegates 
bear to each other ; as, for instance, though Delaware 
has one delegate, and Virginia but ten, yet Virginia 
has more than ten times as much power and influence 
in the government as Delaware ; to prove this, it was 
observed, that Virginia would have a much greater 
chance to carry any measure, than any number of 
States whose delegates were altogether ten, (suppose 
the States of Delaware^ Connecticut, Rhode Island, 
and New Hampshire,) since the ten delegates from 
Virginia, in every thing that related to the interest of 
that State, would act in union, and move in one solid 
and compact body; whereas, the delegates of these 
four States, though collectively equal in number to 
those from Virginia, coming from different States, 
having different interests, will be less likely to har- 
monize and move in concert. As a further proofs it 



OF THE FEDERAL C0NVENTI0I7. 46 

was said, that Virginia, as the system is now reported, 
by uniting with her the delegates of four other States, 
can carry a question against the sense and interest of 
eight States, by sixty-four different combinations ; the 
four States voting with Virginia being every time so 
far different, as not to be composed of the same four ; 
whereas, the State of Delaware can only, by uniting 
four other States with her, carry a measure against the 
sense of eight States, by two different combinations, — 
a mathematical proof, that the State of Virginia has 
thirty-two times greater chance of carrying a measure, 
against the sense of eight States, than Delaware, al- 
though Virginia has only ten times as many delegates. 
It was also shown, that the idea was totally falla- 
cious, which was attempted to be maintained, that, if 
a State had one thirteenth part of the numbers com- 
posing the delegation in this system, such State would 
have as much influence as under the articles of con- 
federation. To prove the fallacy of this idea, it was 
shown, that, under the articles of confederation, the 
State of Maryland had but one vote in thirteen, yet 
no measure could be carried against her interests with- 
out seven States, a majority of the whole, concurring 
in it ; whereas, in this system, though Maryland has 
six votes, which is more than the proportion of one in 
thirteen, yet five States may, in a variety of combina- 
tions, carry a question against her interest, though seven 
other States concur with her ] and six States, by a much 
greater number of combinations, may carry a measure 
against Maryland, united witb six other Statias. I 
shall here. Sir, just observe, that, as the committee of 
detail reported the system, the delegates from the dif- 
ferent States were to be one for every. forty thousand 
inhabitants; it was afterwards altered to one for every 



46 SECRET PROCEEDINGS 

thirty thousand. This alteration was made after I 
left the convention, at the instance of whom I know 
not ; but it is evident, that the alteration is in favor of 
the States which have large and extensive territory^ 
to increase their power and influence in the govern- 
ment, and to the injury of the smaller States, — ^^since 
it is the States of extensive territory, who will most 
speedily increase the number of their inhabitants, as 
before has been observed, and will, therefore, most 
speedily procure an increase to the number of their 
delegates. By this alteration, Yii^inia, North Caro- 
lina, or' Georgia, by obtaining one hundred and 
twenty thousand additional inhabitants, will be en- 
titled to four additional delegates ; whereas, such State 
would only have been entitled to three, if forty thou- 
sand had remained the number by which to apportion 
the delegation. As to that part of this section that 
relates to direct taxation, there was also an objection, 
for the following reasons. It was said, that a large 
sum of money was to be brought into the national 
treasury by the duties on commerce, which would be 
almost wholly paid by the commercial States; it 
would be unequal and unjust, that the sum which was 
necessary to be raised by direct taxation, should be 
apportioned equally upon all the States, obliging the 
commercial States to pay as large a share of the rev- 
enue arising therefrom, as the States from whom no 
revenue had been drawn by imposts ; since the wealth 
and industry of the inhabitants of the commercial 
States will, in the first place, be severely taxed through 
their commerce, and afterwards be equally taxed with 
the industry and wealth of the inhabitants of the other 
States, who have paid no part of that revenue; so 
that, by this provision, the inhabitants of the commer- 



OF THE FEDERAL CONVENTION. 47 

cial States are, in this system, obliged to bear an un- 
reasonable and disproportionate share in the expenses 
of the Union, and the payment of thai foreign and 
domestic debt, which was incurred not more for the 
benefit of the commercial than of the other States. 

In the sixth section of the first article, it is provided, 
that senators- and representatives may be appointed to 
any civil office under the authority of the United 
States, except such as shall have been created, or the 
emoluments of which have been increased, during the 
time for which they were elected. Upon this subject. 
Sir, there was a great diversity of sentiment among 
the members of the convention. As the propositions 
were reported by the committee of the whole House, 
a senator or repiesentative could not be appointed to 
any office under a particular State, or under the United 
States, during the time for which tLey were chosen, 
nor to any office under the United States, until one 
year after the expiration of that 4ime. It was said, 
and, in my opinion, justly, that no good reason could 
be assigned, why a senator or representative should 
be incapacitated to hold an office in his own govern- 
ment, since it can only bind him ipore closely to his 
State, and attach him the more to its interests, which, 
as its representative, he is bound to consult and sacredly 
guard, as far as is consistent with the welfare of the 
Union ; and therefore, at most, would only add the 
additional motive of gratitude for discharging his duty ; 
and, according to this idea, the clause which prevent- 
ed senators or delegates from holding offices in their 
own States, was rejected by a considerable majority. 
Bat^ Sir, we sacredly endeavoured to preserve all that 
part of the resolution which prevented them from be- 
ing eligible to offices under the United States; as we 



48 SECRET PROCEEDINGS 

considered it essentially necessary to preserve the in- 
tegrity, independence, and dignity of the legislature, 
and to secure its members from corruption. 

I was in the number of those who were extremely 
solicitous to preserve this part of the report i but there 
was a powerful opposition made by such as wished 
the members of the legislature to be eligible to offices 
under the United States. Three different times did 
they attempt to procure an alteration, and as often 
failed ; a majority firmly adhering to the resolution as 
reported by the committee; however, an alteration 
was at length, by dint of perseverance, obtained, even 
within the last twelve days of the convention ; for it 
happened after I left Philadelphia. As to the excep- 
tion, that they cannot be appointed to offices created 
by themselves, or the emoluments of which are by 
themselves increased, it is certainly of little conse- 
quence, since they may easily evade it by creating 
new offices, to which may be appointed the persons 
who fill the offices before created, and thereby vacan- 
cies will be made, which may be filled by the mem- 
bers who, for that purpose, have created the new 
offices. 

It is true, the acceptance of an office vacates their 
seat, nor can they be reelected during their continu- 
ance in office. But it was said, that the evil would 
first take place"; that the price for the office would be 
paid before it was obtained ; that vacating the seat of 
the person who was appointed to office, made way for 
the admission of a new member, who would come 
there as desirous to obtain an office as he whom he 
succeeded, and as ready to pay the price necessary to 
obtain it ; in fine, that it would be only driving away 
the flies who were filled, to make room for those that 



OF THE FEDERAL CONVENTION. 49 

were hungry; and as the system is now reported, the 
President having the power to nominate to all offices, 
it must be evident, that there is no possible security 
for the integrity and. independence of the legislature, 
but that they are most unduly placed under the influ- 
ence of the President, and exposed to bribery and cor- 
ruption. 

The seventh section of this article was also the 
subject of contest. It was thought by many members 
of the convention, that it was very wrong to confine 
the origination of all revenue bills to the House of 
Representatives, since the members of the Senate will 
be chosen by the people, as well as the members of 
the House of Delegates, if not immediately, yet medi-i- 
ately, being chosen by the members of the State legis- 
lature, which members are elected by the people ; and 
that it makes no real difference, whether we do a thing 
in person, or by a deputy or agent appointed by us for 
that purpose. 

That no argument can be drawn from the House of 
Lords in the British constitution, since they are neither 
mediately nor immediately the representatives of the 
people, but are one of the three estates composing that 
kingdom, having hereditary rights and privileges, dis- 
tinct from, and independent of, the people. 

That it may, and probably will, be a future source 
of dispute and controversy between the two branches, 
what are or are not revenue bills, and the more so as 
they are not defined in the constitution ; which con- 
troversies may be difficult to settle, and may become 
serious in their consequences, there being no power in 
the constitution to decide upon, or authorized, in cases 
of absolute necessity, to terminate them by a proroga- 
tion or dissolution of either of the branches ; a remedy 
6 



i 



so SECRET PROCEEDINGS 

provided in the British constitution, where the Kong 
has that power, which has been found necessary at 
times to be exercised, in case of violent dissensions 
between the Lords and Commons on the subject of 
money bills. 

That every regulation of commerce, every law rela- 
tive to excises, stamps, the post-office, the imposing of 
taxes and their collection, the creation of courts and 
offices, in fine, every law for the Union, if enforced 
by any pecuniary sanctions, as they would tend to 
bring money into the continental treasury, might, and 
no doubt would^ be considered a revenue act; that, 
consequently, the Senate, the members of which will, 
it may be presumed, be the moat select in their choice, 
and consist of men the most enlightened, and of the 
greatest abilities, who, from the duration of their ap* 
pointment and the permanency of their body, will 
probably be best acquainted with the common concerns 
of the States, and with the means of providing for 
them, will be rendered almost useless as a part of the 
legislature ; and that they will have but little to do in 
that capacity, except patiently to wait the proceedings 
of the House of Representatives, and afterwards exam- 
ine and approve, or propose amendments. 

There were also objections to that part of this sec- 
tion which relates to the negative of the President. 
There were some who thought no good reason could 
be assigned for giving the President a negative of any 
kind. Upon the principle of a check to the proceed- 
ings of the legislature, it was said to be unnecessary ; 
that the two branches having a control over each 
other's proceedings, and the Senate being chosen by 
the State legislatures, and being composed of members 
from the different States, there would always be a 



OF TtiE FEDERAL CONVEKTION. 5l 

sufficient guard against measures being hastily or 
rashly adopted ; that the President was not likely to 
have more wisdom or integrity than the senators, or 
any of them, or to better know or consult the interest 
of the States, than any member of the Senate, so as to 
be entitled to a negative on that principle ; and as to 
the precedent from the British constitution, (for we 
were eternally troubled with arguments and prece- 
dents from the British government,) it was said it 
would not apply. The King of Great Britain there 
composed one of the three estates of the kingdom ; he 
was possessed of rights and privileges as such, distinct 
from the Lords and Commons ; rights and privileges 
which descended to his heirs, and were inheritable by 
them ; that, for the preservation of these, it was neces- 
sary he should have a negative, but that this was not 
the case with the President of the United States, who 
was no more than an officer of government, the sov- 
ereignty was not in him, but in the legislature. And 
it was further urged, even if he was allowed a negative, 
it ought not to be of so great extent as that given by 
the system, since his single voice is to countervail the 
whole of either branch, and any number less than 
two thirds of the other ; however, a majority of the 
convention was of a different opinion, and adopted it 
as it now makes a part of the system. 

By the eighth section of this article. Congress is to 
have power to lay and collect taxes, duties, imposts, 
and excises. When we met in convention after our 
adjournment, to receive the report of the committee of 
detail, the members of that committee were requested 
to inform us, what powers were meant to be vested in 
Congress by the word duties in this section, since the 
word imposts extended to duties on goods imported^ 



52 SECR£T PROCE£DINGa 

and by another part of the system no duties on exports 
were to be laid. In answer to this inquiry, we were 
informed, that it was meant to give the general gov- 
ernment the power of laying stamp duties on paper, 
parchmient, and vellum. We then proposed to have 
the power inserted in express words, lest disputes here- 
after might arise on the subject, and that the meaning 
might be understood by all who were to be affected 
by it ; but to this it was objected, because it was said,. 
that the word stamp would probably sound odiously in 
the ears of many of the inhabitants, and be a cause of 
objection. By the power of imposing stamp duties, 
the Congress will have a right to declare, that no wills, 
deeds, or other instruments of writing shall be good 
and valid, without being stamped ; that, without being 
reduced to writing and being stamped, no bargaini 
sale, transfer of property, or contract of any kind or 
nature whatsoever, shall be binding ; and also that no 
exemplifications of records, depositions, or fffdrntes of 
any kind, shall be received in evidence, tmlMS they 
have the same solemnity. They may likewise oblige 
all proceedings of a judicial nature to be stamped, to 
give them effect. Those stamp duties may be imposed 
to any amount they please ; and, under the pretence 
of securing the collection of these duties, and to pre- 
vent the laws which imposed them from being evaded, 
the Congress may bring the decision of all questions 
relating to the conveyance, disposition, and rights of 
property, and every question relating to contracts be- 
tween man and man, into the courts of the general 
government, — their inferior courts in the first instance, 
and the superior court by appeal. By the power to 
lay and collect imposts, they may impose duties on 
any or every article of commerce imported into these 



OF THE FEDERAL CONVENTION. 68 

States, to what amount they please. * By the power to 
lay excises, (a power very odious in its nature, since 
it authorizes officers to go into your houses, your kitch- 
ens, your cellars, and to examine into your private 
concerns,) the Congress may impose duties on every 
article of use or consumption, — on the food that we 
eatj^ on the liquors we drink, on the clothes that we 
wear, the glass which enlightens our houses, or the 
hearths necessary for our warmth and comfort. By 
the power to lay and collect taxes, they may proceed 
to direct taxation on every individual, either by a cap- 
itation tax on their heads, or an assessment on their 
property. By this part of the section, therefore, the 
government has power to lay what duties they please 
-on goods imported ; to lay what duties they please, 
^ ^ afterwards^ on whatever we use or consume ; to im- 
pose stamp duties to what amount they please, and in 
whatever case they please ; afterwards to impose on 
the people direct taxes, by capitation tax, or by assess- 
mentj to what amount they choose ,• and thus to sluice 
them at every vein, as long as they have a drop of 
blood, without any control, limitation, or restraint ; 
while all the officers for collecting these taxes, stamp 
duties, imposts^ and excises, axe to be appointed by the 
general government, under its directions, not account- 
able to the States ; nor is there even a security, that 
they shall be citizens of the respective States in which 
they are to exercise their offices. At the same time, 
the construction of every law imposing any and all 
these taxes and duties, and directing the collection of 
them, and every question arising thereon, and on the 
conduct of the officers appointed to execute these lawd . 
and to collect these taxes and duties, so various in 
Iheit kinds, is taken away from the courts of justice- 
6* 



64 SECRET PROCEEDINGS 

of the different States, and confined to the courts of 
the general government, there to be heard and deter- 
mined by judges holding their offices under the ap- 
pointment not of the States, but of the general gov- 
ernment. 

Many of the members, and myself among the num- 
ber, thought, that the States were much better judges 
of the circumstances of their citizens, and what sum 
of money could be collected from them by direct tax- 
ation, and of the manner in which it could be raised, 
with the greatest ease and convenience to their citi- 
zensj than the general government could be ,* and that 
the general government ought not to have the power 
of laying direct taxes in any case but in that of the 
delinquency of a State. Agreeably to this sentiment, 
I brought in a proposition, on which a vote of the con- 
Tention was taken. The proposition was as follows ; 
" And whenever the legislature of the United States 
shall find it necessary that revenue' should be raised 
by direct taxation, having apportioned the same by the 
above rule, requisitions shall be made of the respective 
S'tates to pay into the continental treasury their respec- 
tive quotas, within a time in the said requisition to be 
specified ; and in case of any of the States failing to 
comply with such requisition, then, and then only, to 
have power to devise and pass acts directing the mode 
and authorizing the collection of the same." Had 
this proposition been acceded to, the' dangerous and 
oppressive power in the general government, of im- 
posing direct taxes on the inhabitants, which it now 
enjoys in all cases, would have been only vested in it 
in case of the non-compliance of a State, as a punish- 
ment for its delinquency, and would have ceased the 
moment that the State complied with the requisition. 



OF THE FEDERAL CONVENTION. 65 

But the proposition was rejected by a majority, con- 
sistently with their aim and desire of increasing the 
power of the general goTernment, as far as possible, 
and destroying the powers and influence of the States. 
And, though there is a provision, that all duties, im- 
posts, and excises shall be uniform, that is, to be laid^ 
to the same amount on the same articles in each 3tate, 
yet this will not prevent Congress from having it in 
their power to cause them to fall very unequal, and 
much heawer on some States than on others, because 
these duties may be laid on articles but little or not at 
all used in some States, and of absolute necessity for 
the use and consumption of others ; in which case, the 
first would pay little or no part of the revenue arising 
therefirom, while the whole, or nearly the whole of. it, 
would be paid by the last, to wit, the States which 
use and consume the articles on which the imposts 
and excises are laid. 

By our original articles of confederation, the Con- 
gress have a power to borrow money and emit bills of 
,credit, on the credit of the United States ; agreeably 
to which, was the report on this system as made by 
the committee- of detail. When we came to this part 
of the report, a motion was made to strike out the 
words " to emit bills of credit." Against the motion 
we urged, that it would be improper to deprive the 
Congress of that power; that it would be a novelty 
unprecedented to establish a government which shouM 
not have such authority ; that it was impossible to 
look forward into futurity so far as to decide, that 
events might not happen, that should render the exer- 
cise of such a power absolutely necessary ; and that . 
we doubted, whether, if a war should take place, it 
would be possible for this country to defend itself, 



66 SEORBT PROCEEDINGS 

without having recourse to paper credit; in which 
case, there would be jbl necessity of becoming a prey 
to our enemies, or violating, the constitution of our 
government ; and that, considering the administration 
of the government would be principally in the hands 
of the wealthy; there could be little reason to fear an 
abuse of the power, by an unnecessary or injurious 
exercise of it. But, Sir, a majority oi the convention, 
being wise beyond every event, and being willing to 
risk any political evil, rather than admit the idea of a 
paper emission, in any possible case, refused to trust 
this authority to a government, to which they were 
lavishing the most unlimited powers of taxation, and to 
the mercy of which they were willing blindly to trust 
the liberty and property of the citizens of every State in 
the Union ; and they erased that clause from the system. 
Among other powers given to this government in the 
eighth section, it has that of appointing tribunals infe^ 
nor to the Supreme Court. To this power there was 
an opposition. It was urged, that there was no occa^ 
sion for inferior courts of the general government to 
be appointed in the different States, and that such 
ought not to be admitted ; that the different State 
judiciaries in the respective States would be competent 
to, and sufficient for, the cognizance, in the first in^ 
stance, of all cases that should arise under the laws of 
the general government, which, being by this system 
made the supreme law of the States, would be bind- 
ing on the different State judiciaries ; that, by giving 
an appeal to the Supreme Court of the, United States, 
the general government would have a sufficient check 
over their decisions, and security for the enforcing of 
their laws ; that to have inferior courts appointed under 
the authority of Congress in^the different Statai, 



OF THE FEDERAL. CONVENTION. 67 

would eventually absorb and swallow up the State 
judiciaries, by drawing all business £rom them to the 
courts of the general government, which the extensive 
and undefined powers, legislative and judicial, of 
which it is possessed, would easily enable it to do ; 
that it would unduly and dangerously increase the 
weight and influence of Congress in the several States, 
be productive of a prodigious number of officers, and 
be attended with an enormous additional and unneces- 
sary e^tpense; that the judiciaries of the respective 
States, not having power to decide upon the laws of 
the general government, but the determination of those 
laws being confined to the judiciaries appointed under 
the authority of Congress, in the first instance, as well 
as on appeal, there would be a necessity for judges or 
magistrates of the general government, and those to a 
considerable nmnber, in each county of every State ; 
that there would be a necessity for courts to be holden 
by them in each county, and that these courts would 
stand in need of all the proper officers, such as sherifls, 
clerks, and others, commissioned under the authority 
of the general government ; in fine, that the adminis- 
tration of justice, as it will relate to the laws of the 
general governknent, would require in each State all 
the magistrates, courts, officers, and expense, which is 
now found necessary in the respective States, for the 
administration of justice as it relates to the laws of the 
State governments. But here, again, we were over- 
ruled by a majority, who, assuming it as a principle, 
that the general government and the State govern- 
ments (as long as they should exist) would be at per- 
petual variance and enmity, and that their interests 
would constantly be opposed to each other, insisted, for 
that reason, that the State judges, being citizens of 



*. 



8S SECEET PROCEEDI:NG8 

their respective States, and holding their commissions 
under them, ought not, though acting on oath, to be 
intrusted with the administration of the laws of the 
general government. 

By the eighth section of the first article, the Con- 
gress have also the power given them to raise and sup- 
port armies, without any limitation as to numbers, and 
without any restriction in time of peace. Thus, Sir, 
this plan of government, instead of guarding against a 
standing army, that engine of arbitrary power, which 
has so often and so succes^iilly been .used for the sub- 
version of freedom, has in its formation given it an 
express and constitutional sanction, and hath provided 
for its introduction ; nor could this be prevented. I 
took the sense of the convention on a proposition, by 
which the Congress should not haVe power, in time 
of peace, to keep embodied more than a certain num^ 
her of regular troops, — that number to be ascertained 
by what should be considered a respectable peace es- 
tablishment. This proposition was rejected by a ma- 
jority ; it being their determination, that the power of 
Congress to keep up a standing army, even in peace, 
should only be restrained by their will and pleeusure. 

This section proceeds, ftirther, to giv« a power to 
the Congress to provide for the calling forth the militia, 
to execute the laws of the Union, suppress insurrec- 
tions, and repel invasions. As to giving such a power, 
there was no objection ; but it was thought by some, 
that this power ought to be given with certain restric- 
tions. It was thought, that not more than a certain 
part of the militia of any one State ought to be obliged 
to march out of the same, or be employed out of the 
same, at any one time, without the consent of the legis- 
lature of such Statei This amendment I endeavoured 



OF THE FEDEEAL CONVENTION. 59 

r 

to obtain ; but it met with the same fate which attend- 
ed ahnost every attempt to limit the powers given to 
the general government, and constitutionally to guard 
against their abuse ] it was not adopted. As it now 
stands, the Congress will have the power, if they 
please, to march the whole militia of Maryland to the 
remotest part of the Union, and keep them in service as 
long as they think proper, without being in any respect 
dependent upon the government of Maryland for this 
unlimited exercise of power over its citizens ; all of 
whom, from the lowest to the greatest, may, during 
su£h service, be subjected to military law, and tied up 
and whipped at the halbert, Hke the meanest of slaves. 

By the next paragraph. Congress is to have the 
power to provide for organizing, arming, and disciplin- 
ing the miUtia, and for governing such part of them 
as may be employed in the service of the United 
States. 

For this extraordinary provision, by which the mi- 
litia, the only defence and protection which the State 
can have for the security of their rights agains^t arbitrar 
ry encroachments of the general government, is taken 
entirely out of the power of their respective States, and 
placed under the power of Congress, it was speciously 
assigned as a reason, that the general government would 
cause the militia to be better regulated and better dis- 
ciplined than the State governments, and that it would 
be proper for the whole militia of the Union to have a 
uniformity in their arms and exercise. To this it was 
answered, that the reason, however specious, was not 
just ; that it would be absurd, the militia of the west- 
em settlements, who were exposed to an Indian 
enemy, should either be confined to the same arms or 
exercise as the militia of the eastern or middle States ; 



60 SECRET PROCEEDINGS 

that the same penalties which would be sufficient to 
enforce ah obedience to militia laws in some States, 
would be totally disregarded in others; that, leaving 
the power to the several States, they would respec- 
tively best know the situation and circumstances of 
their citizens, and the regulations that would be neces- 
sary and sufficient to effect a well-regulated militia in 
each ; that we were satisfied the militia had hereto- 
fore been as well disciplined as if they had been under 
the regulations of Congress, and that the States would 
now have an additional motive to keep their militia in 
proper order, and fit for service, as it would be the 
only chance to preserve their existence against a gen- 
eral government armed with powers sufficient to de- 
stroy them. 

These observations. Sir, procured from some of the 
members an open avowal of those reasons, by which 
we believed before that they were actuated. They 
said, that, as the States would be opposed to the gen- 
eral government, and at enmity with it, (which, as I 
have already observed, they assumed as a principle,) if 
the militia was under the control and the authority of 
the respective States, It would enable them to thwart 
and oppose the general government. They said, the 
States ought to be at the mercy of the general govern- 
ment, and, therefore, that the militia ought to be put 
under its power, and not suffered to remain under the 
power of the respective States.' In answer to these 
declarations, it was urged, that, if after having retained 
to the general government the great powers already 
granted, and among those, that of raising and keeping 
up regular troops without limitations, the power over 
the militia should be taken away from the States, and 
also given to the general government, it ought to be 



OF THE FEDERAL CONVENTION. 61 

. ..V - 

considered as the Isust cotip de grace to the State gov- 
ernments ; that it must foe the most convincing proof, 
the advocates of this system design the destruction, of 
the State governments, and that no professions to the 
contrary ought to be trusted ; and that every State in 
the Union ought to reject such a system with indigna- 
tion, since, if the general government should attempt 
to oppress and enslave them, they could not have any 
possifole means of self-defence ; because, the proposed 
system taking away from the States the right of or- 
ganizing, arming, and disciplining the militia, the first 
attempt made by a State to put the militia in a situa- 
tion to counteract the arbitrary measures of the gen- 
eral government would be construed into an act of 
rebellion or treason ; and Congress would instantly 
march their troops into ihe State. It was further ob- 
served, that, when a government wishes .to deprive- 
its citizens of freedom, and reduce them to slavery,, 
it generally makes use^ of a standing army for that 
purpose, and leaves the militia in a situation as con«- 
temptible as possifole, lest they might oppose its arbi-^ 
trary designs ; that, in this system, we give the gen- 
eral government every provision it could wish for, anft 
even invite it to subvert the liberties of the Statea 
and their citizens ; since we give it the right to in- 
crease and keep up a standing army as numerous as it 
would wish, and, by placing the militia under its 
power, enable it to leave the militia totally unorgan^^ 
ized, undisciplined, and even to disarm them ; while 
the citizens, so far from complaining of this neglecty 
might even esteem it a favor in the general govern- 
ment, as thereby they would be freed from the burd^i 
of militia duties, and left to their own private occupa^ 
tions or pleasures. However, all arguments, and every 
6 



02 SECRET PROCEEDINGS 

seaflon that could be urged on this subject, as well as 
on many others, were obliged to yield to one that was 
unanswerable, — a majority upon the division. 

By the ninth section of this article, the importation 
of such persons as any of the States now existing shall 
think proper to admit, shall not be prohibited prior to 
the year one thousand eight hundred and eight ; but 
a duty may be imposed on such importation, not ex- 
ceeding ten dollars for each person. 

The design of this claute, is to prevent the general 
govenunent from prohibiting the importation of slaves ; 
but the same reasons which caused them to strike ouC 
the word national, and not admit the word stamps^ 
influenced them here to guard against the word slaves. 
They anxiously sought to avoid the- admission of ex- 
pressions which might be odious -in the ears of Ameri- 
cans, although they were willing to admit into their 
system those things which the expressions signified. 
And hence it is, that the clause is so worded, as really 
to authorize the general government to impose a duty 
of ten dollars on every foreigner who comes into a 
State to become a citizen, whether he comes abso- 
lutely free, or qualifiedly so, as a servant ; although 
this is contrary to the design of the framers, and the 
duty was only meant to extend to the importation of 
daves. 

This clause was the subject of a great diversity of 
sentiment in the convention. As the system was re- 
ported by the committee of detail, the provision was 
general, that such importation should not be prohib- 
ited, without confining it to any particular period. 
This was rejected by eight States, — Georgia, South 
Carolina, and, I think. North Carolina, voting for it. 

We were then told by the delegates of the two first 



OF THE FEDERAL CONVENTION. • 63 

of those States, that their States would never agree to 
a S3^tem, which put it in the power of the general 
government to prevent the importation of slaves, and 
that they, as delegates from those States, must with- - 
hold their assent from such a system. 

A committee of one member from each State was 
chosen by ballot, to take this part of the system under 
their consideration, and to endeavour to agree upon 
some report, which should reconcile those States. To 
this committee also was referred the following proposi- 
tion, which had been reported by the committee of de- 
tail, to wit ,* ''No navigation act shall be passed without ' 
the assent of two thirds of the members present in 
each House"; a proposition which the staple and 
commercial States were solicitous to retain, lest their 
commerce should be placed too much under^the power 
of the eastern States ; but which these last States were 
as anxious to reject. This committee, of which also 
I had the honor to be a member, met and took under 
their consideration the subjects committed to them. I 
found the eastern States, notwithstanding their aver- 
sion to slavery, were very willing to indulge the 
southern States, at least with a temporary liberty to 
prosecute the slavie-trade, provided the southern States " ^ 
would, in their turn, gratify them, by laying no 're* ^ y 
striction on navigation acts ; and after a very little - ^ 
time the committee, by a great majority, agreed on a '^^ 
report, by which the general government was to be 
prohibited from preventing the importation of slaves 
for a limited time, and the restrictive clause relative 
to navigation acts was to be omitted. 

This report was adopted by a majority of the con- 
vention, but not without considerable opposition. It 
was said, that we had just assumed a place among in- 



64 SECRET PROCEEDINGS 

dependent nations, in consequence of our opposition to 
the attempts of Great Britain to enslave us ; that this 
opposition was grounded upon the preservation of those 
tights to which God and nature had entitled us, not in 
particular, but in common with all the rest of man- 
kind ; that we had appealed to the Supreme Being for 
his assistance, as the God of 'freedom, who could not 
but approve our efforts to preserve the rights which he 
had thus imparted to his creatures ; that now, when 
we scarcely had risen from our knees, from supplicate 
ing his aid and protection^ in forming our government 
over a free people, a government formed pretendedly 
on the priiiQiples of liberty, and for its preservation, ■ — 
in that government, .to have a provision not only put- 
ting it out of it^ power to restrain and prevent the 
dave-trade, even encouraging that most infamous traf- 
fic, by giving the States power and influence in the 
Union, in proportion as they cruelly and wantonly 
sport with the' rights of their fellow creatures, ought 
to be considered as a solemn mockery of, and insult 
to that God whose protection we had theii implored, 
and could not fail to hold us up in detestation, and 
render us contemptible to every true friend of liberty 
in the world. It was said, it ought to be considered 
that national crimes can only be, and frequently are 
punished in this world, by national punishments ; and 
that the continuance of the slave-trade, and thus giving 
it a national sanction and encouragement, ought to be 
considered as justly exposing us to the displeasure and 
vengeance of Him, who is equally Lord of all, and 
who views with equal eye the poor African slave and 
his American master. 

It was urged, that, by this system, we were giving 
the general government full and absolute power to 



OF THE FEDERAL CONVENTION. 65 

regulate commerce, under which general power it 
would have a right to restrain, or totally prohibit, the 
slave-trade; it must, therefore, appear to the world 
absurd and disgraceful to the last degree, that we' 
should except from the exercise of that power, the 
oiily branch of commerce which is unjustifiable in its 
nature, and contrary to the rights of inankind ; that, 
on the contrary, we ought rather to prohibit expressly 
in our constitution, the further importation of slaves; 
and tc authorize the general government, from time to 
time, to make such regulations as should be thought 
most advantageous for the gradual abolition of slavery, 
and the emancipation of the slaves which are already 
in the States. Thsit slavery is inconsistent with the 
genius of republicanism, and h^s a tendency to destroy 
those principles'on which it is supported, as it lessens- 
the sense of the equal rights of mankind, and habitu- 
ates us to tyranny and oppression. 

It was further urged, that, by this system of gov- 
ernment, every State is to be protected both from 
foreign invasion and from domestic insurrections ; that, 
from this Qonsideration, it was of the utmost impor- 
tance it should have a power to restrain the importa* 
tion of slaves ; since, in proportion as the number of 
slaves are increased in any State, in the same pro- 
portion the State is weakened, and exposed to for» 
eign invasion or domestic insurrection, and by so 
much less will it be able to protect itself against 
either; and, therefore, will by so much the more 
want aid from, and be a- burden to the Union. It was 
further said, that as, in this system, we were giving 
the general government a power, under the idea of 
national character, or national interest, to regulate even 
bur weights and measures, and have prohibited all 
6* 



66 SECRET PROCEEDINGS 

possibility of emitting paper money, and passing ipr 
solvent laws, &c., it must appear still more extrabiy 
dinary^ that we should prohibit the government from 
interfering with the slave-trade, than which, nothing 
could so materially affect both our national hoAor and 
interest. These reasons influenced me, both on the 
committee and in convention, most decidedly to oppose 
and vote against the clause as it now makes a part of 
the system. 

You will perceive. Sir, not only that the general 
government is prohibited from interfering in the slave- 
trade' before the year eighteen hundred and eight, but 
that there is no provision in the constitution that it 
shall afterwards be prohibited, nor any security that 
such prohibition will ever take place ; and I think 
there is great reason to believe, that, if the importation 
of slaves is permitted until the year eighteen hundred 
and eight, it will not be prohibited afterwards. At 
this time, we do not generally hold this cominerce io 
so great abhorrence as we have done. When our lib- 
erties were at Stake, we warmly felt for the common 
rights of men. The danger being thought to be past, 
which threatened ourselves, we are daily growing 
more insensible to those rights. In those States which 
have restraihed or prohibited the importation of slaves, 
it is only done by legislative acts, which may be re- 
pealed. When those States find, that they must, in 
their national character and connexion, suffer in the 
disgrace, and share in the inconveniences attendant 
upon that detestable and iniquitous traflSc, they may 
be desirous also to share in the benefits arising from 
it ; and the odium attending it will be greatly effaced 
by the sanction which is given to it in the genetal 
government. 



OF THE FEDERAL CONVENTION. 67 

By the next paragraph, the general government is 
to have a power of suspending the habeas carpus act, 
in cases of rebellion or invasion. 

As the State governments have a power of suspend- 
ing the habeas carpus act in those cases, it was said, 
there could be no reason for giving such a power to 
the general government ; since, whenever the State 
which is invaded, or in which an insurrection takes 
place, finds its safety requires it, it will make use of 
that power. And it was urged, that, if we gave this 
power to the general government, it would be an en- 
gine of oppression in its hands; since, whenever a 
State should oppose its views, however arbitrary and 
unconstitutional, and refuse submission to them,, the 
general government may declare it to be an act of re- 
bellion, and, suspending the habeas carpus act, tnay 
seize upon the persons of those advocates of freedom, 
who have had virtue and resolution enough to excite 
the- opposition, and may imprison them during its 
pleasure, in the remotest part of the Union ; so that a 
citizen of Georgia might be ^ bastiled in the furthest 
part of New Hampshire^ or a citizen of New Hamp- 
shire in the furthest extreme to the south, cut oflf from 
their family, their friends, and their every connexion. 
These considerations induced me. Sir, to give my 
negative also to this clause. 

In (his same section, there is a provision, that no 
preference should be given to the ports of one State 
over another, and that vessels bound to or from one 
State shall not be obliged to enter, clear, or pay duties 
in another. This provision, as well as that which re- 
lates to the uniformity of impost duties and excises, 
was introduced. Sir, by the delegation of this State. 
Without such a provision, it would have been in the 



68 SECRET PROCEEDINGS 

power of the general government to have compelled 
til ships sailing into^r out of the Chesapeake, to clear 
and enter at Norfolk^ or some port in Virginia; a reg- 
ulation which would be extremely injijurious to our 
commerce, but which would, if considered merely as 
to the interest of the Union, perhaps not be thought 
unreasonable ; since it would render the collection of 
the- revenue arising from commerce more certain and 
less expensive. 

But, Sir, as the system is now reported, the .general 
government have a poff^er to establish what ports they 
please in each State, and to ascertain at what ports in 
every State ships shall clear and enter in such St^e ; 
a power which may be so used as to destroy the effect 
of that provision^ since by it may be. established' a 
port in such a place, as shall be so inconvenient to the 
States, as to render it more eligible for their shipping 
to clear and enter in another than in their own States. 
Suppose, for instance, the general government should 
determine, that all ships which cleared or entered in 
Maryland, shouldxlear and enter at Georgetown, on the 
Potomac ; it would oblige all the ships which sailed 
from or were bound to any other port of Maryland, to 
clear or enter in some port in Virginia. To prevent 
such a use of the powpr which the general govern- 
ment now has, of limiting the number of ports in a 
State, and fixing the place or places where they shall 
be, we endeavoured to obtain a provision, that the 
general government should only, in the first instance, 
have authority to ascertain the number of ports proper 
to be established in each State, and transmit informa- 
tion thereof to the several States, the legislatures of 
which, respectively, should have the powier to fix the 
places where those ports should be, according to their 



OF THE FEDERAL CONVENTION. 69 

idea of what would be most advaatageous to the coib- 
merce of .their State, and most for the ease and con- 
venience of their citizens ; and that the generaji gov- 
ernment should not interfere in the establishment of 
the places, unless the legislature of the State should 
neglect or refuse so to do ; but we could not obtain 
this alteration. 

By the tenth section every State is prohibited from 
emitting bills of credit. As it was reported by the 
committee of detail, the States were only prohibited 
from emitting them without the consent of Congress ; 
but the convention was so smitten with the paper ' 
money dread, that they insisted the prohibition should 
be absolute. It was my opinion. Sir, that the States 
ought not to be totally deprived of the right to emit 
bills of credit, and that, as we had not given an author- 
ity to the general government for that purpose, it was 
the more necessary to retain it in the States. I con- 
sidered that this State, and some others, had formerly 
received great benefit from paper emissions, and that^ 
if public and private credit should once more be re- 
stored,- such emissions might hereafter be equally 
advantageous; and^ further, that it is impossible to 
foresee, that events may not take place, which shall 
render paper money of absolute necessity ; and it was 
my opinion, if this power was not to be exercised by 
a State, without theT permission of the general govern- 
ment, it ought to be satisfactory even to those who .1 
were the most haunted by the apprehensions of paper 
money. I therefore thought it my duty to vote against 
this part of the systein. 

The same section also puts it out of the power of 
the States to make any thing but gold and silver coin 
a tender in payment of debts, or to pass any law imn 
pairing the obligation of contracts. 



70 SECRET PROCEEDINGS 

I considered, Sir, that there might be times of snch 
great pubUc calamities and distress, and of such ex- 
treme scarcity of specie, as should render it the duty 
of a govenunent, for the preservation of even the most 
valuable part of its citizens, in some measure to inter- 
fere in their favor, by passing laws totally or partially 
stopping the courts of justice, or authorizing the debtor 
to pay by instalments, or by delivering up his property 
to his creditors at a reasonable and honest valuation. 
The times have been such as to render regulations of 
this kind necessary in most or all of the States, to pre- 
vent the wealthy creditor and the moneyed man from 
totally destroying the poor, though even industrious 
debtor. Such times may again arrive. I therefore 
Voted against depriving the States of this power, — 
a power which I am decided they ought to possess, 
but which, I admit, ought only to be exercised on very 
important and urgent occasions. I apprehend. Sir, the 
principal cause of complaint among the people at large 
is, the public And private debt with which they are 
oppressed, and which, in the present scarcity of cash, 
threatens them with destruction, unless they can ob- 
tain so much indulgence in point of time, that by 
industry and frugality they may extricate themselves. 

This government proposal, I apprehend, so far from 
removing, will greatly increase those complaints, since, 
grasping in its all-powerful hand' the citizens of the 
respective States, it will, by the imposition of the 
variety of taxes, imposts, stamps, excises, and other 
duties, squeeze from them the little money they may 
acquire, the hard earnings of their industry, as you 
would squeeze the juice from an orange, till not a drop 
more can be extracted, and then let loose upon them 
their private creditors, to whosie mercy it consigns 



OF THE FEDERAL CONVENTION. 71 

them, by whom their property is to be seized upon 
and sold, in this scarcity of specie, at a sheriff's sale, 
where nothing but ready cash can be received, for a 
tenth part of its value, and themselves and their fami- 
lies to be consigned to indigence and distress, without 
their governments having a pov/er to give them a mo- 
ment's indulgence, however necessary it might be, 
and however desirous to grant them aid. 

By this same section, every State is also prohibited 
from laying any imposts or duties on imports or ex- 
ports, without the permission of the general govern- 
ment. It was urged, that, as almost all sources of 
taxation were given to Congress, it would be but rea- 
sonable to leave the States the power of bringing rev- 
enue into their treasuries, by laying a duty on exports 
if they should think proper, which might be so light 
as not to injure or discourage industry, and yet might 
be productiv/C of considerable revenue. Also, that 
there might be cases in which it would be proper, for 
the purpose of encouraging manufactures, to lay duties 
to prohibit the exportation of raw materials ; and, even 
in addition to the duties laid by Congress on imports 
for the sake of revenue, to lay a duty to discourage 
the importation of particular articles into a State, or to 
enable the manufacturer here to supply us on as good 
terms as they could be obtained from a foreign mar- 
ket. However, the most we could obtain was, that 
this power might be exercised by the States with, and 
only with the consent of Congress, and subject to its 
control. And so anxious were they to seize o;i every 
shilling of our money, for the general government, 
that they insisted even the little revenue that might 
thus arise, should not be appropriated to the use of the 
respective States where it was collected, but should 



72 SECRET PROCEEDINGS 

be paid into the treasury of the United States ; and 
accordingly it is so determined. 

The second article relates to the executive, — his 
mode of election, his powers, and the length of time 
he shall continue in office. 

On these subjects there was. a great diversity of 
sentiment. Many of the members were desirous, that 
the President should be elected for seven years, and 
not to be eligible a second time ; others proposed, that 
he should not be absolutely ineligible, but that he 
should not be capable of being chosen a second time, 
until the expiration of a certain number of years. The 
supporters of the above propositions went upon the 
idea, that the best security for liberty was a limited 
duration and a rotation of qffice in the cliief executive 
department. 

There was a party who attempted to have the Pres- 
ident appointed during 'good behaviour, without any 
limitation as to time ; and, not being able to succeed 
in that attempt, they then endeavoured to have him 
reeligible without any restraint. It was objected, that 
the choice of a President to continue in office during 
good behaviour, would be at once rendering our sys- 
tem an elective monarchy ; and that, if the President 
was to be reeligible without any interval of disqualifi- 
cation, it would amount nearly to the same thing ; 
since, with the powers that the President is to enjoy, 
and the interests and influence with which they will 
be attended, he will be almost absolutely certain of 
being reelected, from time to time, as long as he lives. 
As the propositions were reported by the committee 
of the whole House, the President was to be chosen 
for seven years, and not to be eligible at any time 
after. In the same manner the proposition was agreed 



OF THE FEDERAL CONVENTION. 73 

to in convention, and so it was reported by the com- 
mittee of detail, although a variety of attempts were 
made to alter that part of the system, by those who 
were of a contrary opinion, in which they repeatedly 
failed ; but. Sir, by never losing sight of their object, 
and choosing a proper time for their purpose, they 
succeeded at length in obtaining the alteration, which 
was not made until within the last twelve days before 
the convention adjourned. 

As the propositions were agreed to by the com- 
mittee of the whole House, the President was to be 
appointed by the national legislature ; and as it was 
reported by the committee of detail, the choice was 
to be made by ballot, in such a manner that the 
States should have an equal voice in the appointment 
of this officer, as they, of right, ought to have ; but 
those who wished as far as possible to establish a 
national instead of a federal government, made re- 
peated attempts to have the President chosen by the 
people at large. On this the sense of the convention 
was taken, I tbink^ not less than three times while I 
was there, and as often rejected ; but, within the last 
fortnight of their session, they obtained the alteration 
in the manner it now stands, by which the large 
States have a very undue influence in the appoint- 
ment of the President. There is no case where the 
States will have an equal voice in the appointment of 
the President, except where two persons shall have 
an equal number of votes, and those a majority of 
the whole number of electors, (a case very imlikely to 
happen,) ot where no person has a majority of the 
votes. In these instances the House of Representa- 
tives are to choose by ballot, each State having an 
equal voice ; but they are confined, in the last in- 
7 



74 SECRET PROCEEDINGS 

Stance, to the five who have the greatest number of 
votes, which gives the largest States a very unequal 
chance of having the President chosen under their 
nomination. 

As to the Vice-President, that great officer of gov- 
eniment, who is, in ceise of death, resignation, re- 
moval, or inability of the President, to supply his 
place, and be vested with his powers, and who is 
officially to be the President of the Senate, there is 
no provision by which a majority of the voices of the 
electors are necessary for his appointment j but, after 
it fiT decided who is chosen President, that person 
who has the uext greatest number of votes of the 
electors, is declared to be legally elected to the Vice- 
Presidency ; so that by this system it is very possible, 
aiid not improbable^ that he may be appointed by the 
electors of a single large State ; and a very undue 
influence in the Senate is given to that State of which 
the Vice-President is a citizen, since, in every question 
where the Senate is divided, that State will have two 
votes, the President having on those occasions a cast- 
ing voice. Every part of the system which relates 
to the Vice-President, as well as the present mode of 
electing the President, was introduced and agreed 
upon after I left Philadelphia. 

Objections were made to that part of this article, 
by which the President is appointed Commander-in- 
chief of the army and navy of the United States, 
and of the militia of the. several States, and it was 
wished to be so far restrained, that he should not 
command in person ; but this could not be obtained. 
The power given to the President, of granting re- 
prieves and pardons, was also thought, extremely dan- 
gerous, and as such opposed. The President thereby 



OF THE FEDERAL CONVENTION. 75 

has the power of pardoning those who are guilty of 
treason, as well as of other offences; it was said, "that 
no treason was so likely to take place as that in 
which the President himself might be engaged, — the 
attempt to assume to himself powers not given by 
the constitution, and establish himself in regal au- 
thority ; in which attempt a provision is made for 
him to secure from punishment the creatures of his 
ambition, the associates and abettors of his treasona- 
ble practices, by granting them pardons, should they 
be defeated in their attempts to subvert the Con- 
stitution. 

To that part of this article also, which giv^es the 
President a right to nominate, and, with the consent 
of the Senate, to appoint all the ofBcers, civil and 
military, of the United States, there was considera- 
ble opposition. It was said, that the person who nom- 
inates will always in reality appoint, and that this 
was giving the President a power and influence, 
which, together with the other powers bestowed upon 
him, would place him above all restraint or control. 
In fine, it was urged, that the President, as here con- 
stituted, was a king, in every thing but the name ; - 
tha^, though he was to be chosen for a limited time, 
yet at the expiration of that time, if he is not re- 
elected, it will depend entirely upon his own modera- 
tion whether he will resign that authority with which 
he has once been invested ; that, from his having the 
appointment of all the variety of oflicers, in every 
part of the civil department for the Union, who will 
be very numerous, in them and their connexions, 
relations, friends, and dependents, he will have a for- 
midable host, devoted to his interest, and ready to 
support his ambitious views. That the army and 



76 SECRET PROCEEDINGS 

navy, whicl^ may be increased without restraint as 
to numbers, the officers of which, from the highest 
to the lowest, are all to be appointed by him, and 
dependent on his will and pleasure, and commanded 
by him in person, will, of course, be subservient to 
his wishes, and ready to execute his commands ; in 
addition to which, thfe militia also are entirely sub- 
jected to his orders. That these circumstances, com- 
bined together, will enable him, when he pleases, to 
become a king in name, as well as in substance, and 
establish himself in office not only for his own life, 
but even, if he chooses, to have that authority per- 
petuated to his family. 

It was further observed, that the only appearance 
of responsibility in the President, which the system 
holds up to our view, is the provision for impeach- 
ment ; but that when we reflect that he cannot be 
impeached but by the House of Delegates, and that 
the members of this House are rendered dependent 
upon, and unduly under the influence of the Presi- 
dent, by being appointable to offices of which he has 
the sole nomination, so that without his favor and 
approbation they cannot obtain them, there is little 
reason to believe, that a majority will ever concur in 
impeaching the President, let his conduct be ever so 
reprehensible ; especially, too, as the final event of that 
impeachment will depend upon a difierent body, and 
the members of the House of Delegates will be cer- 
tain, should the decision be ultimately in favor of the 
President, to become thereby the objects of his dis- 
pleasure, and to bar to themselves every avenue to 
the emoluments of government. 

Should he, contrary to probability, be impeached, 
he is afterwards to be tried and adjudged by the 



OF THE FEDERAL CONVENTION. 77 

Senate, and, without the concurrence of two thirds 
of the members who shall be present, he cannot be 
convicted. This Senate being constituted a privy 
council to the President, it is probable many of its 
leading and influential members may have advised or 
concurred in the very measures for which he may be 
impeached ; the members of the Senate also are by 
the system, placed as unduly under the influence of, 
and dependent upon the President, as the members 
of the other branch, since they also are appointable 
to offices, and cannot obtain them but through the 
favor of the President. There will be great, impor- 
tant, and valuable offices under this government, 
should it take place, more than sufficient to enable 
him to hold out the expectation of one of them to 
each of the senators. Under these circumstances, 
will any person conceive it to be difficult for the 
President always to secure to himself more than one 
third of that body ? Or, can it reasonably be believ- 
ed, that a criminal will be convicted, who is constitu- 
tionally empowered to bribe his judges, at the head 
of whom is to preside on those occasions the Chief ^ 
Justice, which officer, in his original appointment, 
must be nominated by the President, and will, there- 
fore, probably, be appointed not so much for his emi- 
nence in legal knowledge and for his integrity, as 
from favoritism and influence ; since the President, 
knowing that in case of impeachment the Chief Jus- 
tice is to preside at his trial, will naturally wish to 
fill that office with a person of whose voice and in- 
fluence he shall consider himself secure ? These are 
reasons to induce a belief, that there will be but little 
probability of the President ever being either im- 
peached or convicted ; but it was also urged, that, 
7* ' • 



78 SECRET PROCEEDINGS 

vested with the powers which the system gives him, 
and with the influence attendant upon those powers, 
to him it would be of little consequence whether he 
was impeached or convicted, since he will be able to 
set both at defiance. These considerations occasioned 
a part of the convention to give a negative to' this 
part of the system establishing the executive, as it is 
now offered for our acceptance. 

By the third article, the judicial power of the 
United States is vested in one supreme court, and in 
such inferior courts, as the Congress may from time 
to time ordain and estabhsh. These courts, and 
these only, will have a right to decide upon the laws 
of the United States, and all questions arising upon 
their construction, and in a judicial manner to carry 
tTiose laws into execution ,• to which the courtsj both 
superior and inferior, of the respective States, and 
their judges and other magistrates, are rendered in- 
competent. To the courts of the general government 
are also confined all cases in law or equity, arising 
under the proposed constitution, and treaties made 
under the authority of the United States ; all cases 
affecting ambassadors, other public ministers, and con- 
suls; all case's of admiralty and maritime jurisdic- 
tion; all controversies to which the United States 
are a party ; all controversies between two or more 
States ; between a State and citizens of another 
State ; between citizens of the same State, claiming 
lands under grants of different States ; and between a 
State, or the citizens thereof, and foreign States, citi- 
zens, or subjects. Whether, therefore, any laws or 
regulations of the Congress, or any acts of its Presi- 
dent or other officers, are contrary to, or not warranted 
by the constitution, rests only with the judges who 



OF THE FEDERAL CONVENTION. 79 

axe appointed by Congress to detennine; by whose 
determinations every State must be bound. Should 
any question arise between a foreign consul and any 
of the citizens of the United States, however' remote 
from the seat of empire, it is to be heard before the 
judiciary of the general government, and in the first 
instance to be heard in the Supreme Court, however 
inconvenient to the parties, and however trifling the 
subject of dispute. 

Should the mariners of an American or foreign ves- 
sel, while in any American port, have occasion to sue 
for their wages, or in any other instance a controversy 
belonging Co the admiralty jurisdiction should take 
place between them and their masters or owners, it is 
in the courts of the general government the suit must 
be instituted ; and either party may carry it by appeal 
to its Supreme Court. The injury to commerce, and 
the oppression to individuals, which may thence arise, 
need not be enlarged upon. Should a citizen of Vir- 
ginia, Pennsylvania, or any other of the United States, 
be indebted to, or have debts due from a citizen of 
this State, or any other claim be subsisting on one side 
or the other, in consequence of commercial or other 
transactions, it is only in the cou/ts of Congress that 
either can apply for redress. The case is the same 
should any claim subsist between citizens of this 
State and foreigners, merchants, mariners, and others, 
whether of a commercial or of any other nature j they 
must be prosecuted in the same courts ; and though 
in the first instance they may be brought in the infe- 
rior, yet an appeal may be made to the supreme judi- 
ciary, even from the remotest State in the Union. 

The inquiry concerning, and trial of, every oflence 
against, and breach of, the laws of Congress, are also 



80 SECRET PROCEEDINGS 

confined to its courts ; the same courts also have the 
sole right to inquire concerning and try every offence, 
from the lowest to the highest, committed by the cit- 
izens of any other State, or of a foreign nation, against 
the laws of this State, within its territory ; and in all 
these cases, the decision may be ultimately brought 
before the supreme tribunal, since the appellate juris- 
diction extends to criminal as well as to civil cases. 
And in all those cases where the general government 
has jurisdiction in civil questions, the proposed consti- 
tution not only makes no provision for trial by jury in 
the first instance, but, by its appellate jurisdiction, ab- 
solutely takes away that inestimable privilege ; since 
it expressly declares the Supreme Court shall have 
appellate jurisdiction both as to law and fact. Should, 
therefore, a jury be adopted in the inferior court, it 
would only be a needless expense, since, on an appeal, 
the determination of that jury, even on questions of 
fact, however honest and upright, is to be of no pos- 
sible effect. The Supreme Court is to take up all 
questions of fact, to examine the evidence relative 
thereto, to decide upon them in the same manner as 
if they had never been tried by a jury ; nor is trial by 
jury secured in criminal cases. It is true, that, in the 
first instance, in the inferior court, the trial is to be by 
jury. In this, and in this only, is the difference be- 
tween criminal and civil cases. But, Sir, the appellate 
jurisdiction extends, as I have observed, to cases crim- 
inal as well as to civil ; and, on the appeal, the court 
is to decide not only on the law, but on the fact. If, 
therefore, even in criminal cases, the general govern- 
ment is not satisfied with the verdict of the jury, its 
oflScer may remove the prosecution to the Supreme 
Court, and there the verSict of the jury is to be of no 



OF THE FEDERAL CONVENTION. 81 

effect, but the judges of this court are to decide upon 
the fact as well as the law, the same as in civil cases. 
Thus, Sir, jury trials, which have ever been the 
boast of the English constitution, which have been by 
our several State constitutions so cautiously secured to 
us, — jury trials, which have so long been considered 
the surest barrier against arbitrary power, and the pal- 
ladium of liberty, with the loss of which the loss of 
our freedom may be dated, are taken away, by the 
proposed form of government, not only in a great va- 
riety of questions between individual and individual, 
but in every case, whether civil or criminal, arising 
under the laws of the United States, or the execution 
of those laws. It is taken away in those very cases, 
where, of all others, it is most essential for our liberty 
to have it sacredly guarded and preserved ,• in every 
case, whether civil or criminal, between government 
and its officers on the one part, and the subject or 
citizen on the other. Nor was this the effect of inat- 
tention, nor did it arise from any real difficulty in 
establishing and securing jury trials by the proposed 
constitution, if the conventioji had wished so to do ; 
but the same reason influenced here as in the case of 
the establishment of inferior courts ; as they could not 
trust State judges, so would they not confide in State 
juries. They alleged, that the general government 
and the State governments would always be at vari- 
ance ; that the citizens of the different States would 
enter into the views and interests of their respective 
States, and therefore ought not to be trusted in deter- 
mining causes in which the general government was 
any way interested, without giving the general gov- 
ernment an opportunity, if it disapproved the verdict 
of the jury, to ajqyeal, and to have the facts examined 



83 SECRET PROCEEDINGS 



>:-H 



into ag3,in, and decided upon by its own judges, on- 
whom it was thought a reliance might be had by the 
general government, they being appointed under its 
authority. 

Thus, Sir, in consequence of this appellate jurisdic- 
tion, and its extension to facts as well as to law, every 
arbitrary act of the general government, and every 
oppression of all that variety of officers appointed 
under its authority, for the collection of taxes, duties,, 
impost, excise, and other purposes, must be submitted 
to by the individual, or must be opposed with little 
prospect of success, and almost a certain prospect of 
ruin, at least in those cases where the middle and 
common class of citizens are interested ; since, to avoid 
that oppression, or to obtain redress, the application 
must be made to one of the courts of th^ United States. 
By good fortune should this application be in the first 
instance attended with success, and should damages 
be recovered equivalent to the injury sustained, an 
appeal lies to the Supreme Court ; in which case, the 
citizen must at once give up his cause, or he must at- 
tend to it at the distance of perhaps more than a thou- 
sand miles from the place of his residence, and must 
take measures to procure before that court, on the ap- 
peal, all the evidence necessary to support his action, 
which, even if ultimately prosperous, must be attended 
with a loss of time, a n^lect of business, and an ex- 
pense which will be greater than the original grievance, 
and to which men in moderate circumstances would 
be utterly unequal. 

By the third section of this article, it is declared, 
that treason against the United States shall consist in 
levying war against them, or in adhering to their ene- 
mies, giviijg them aid or comfort. 



OF THE FEDERAL CONVENTION. 83 

By the principles of the American revolution, arbi- 
txary power may and ought to be resisted, even by 
arms if necessary. The time may come, when it shall 
be the duty of a State, in order to preserve itself from 
the oppression of the general government, to have re- 
course to the sword ; in which case, the proposed form 
of government declares, that the State and every of 
its citizens who act under its authority are guilty of a 
direct act of treason ; — reducing, by this provision, the 
different States to this alternative, that they must 
tamely and passively yield to despotism, or their citi- 
zens must oppose it at the hazard of the halter if un- 
succesjsful : and reducing the citizens of the State 
which shall take arms, to a situation in which they 
must be exposed to punishment, let them act as they 
will ; since, if they obey the authority of their State 
government, they will be guilty of treason against the 
United States; if they join the general goverjiment, 
they will be guilty of treason against their own State. 

To save the citizens of the respective States from 
this disagreeable dilemma, and to secure them from 
being punishable as traitors to the United States, when 
acting expressly in obedience to the authority of their 
own State, I wished to have obtained, as an amend- 
ment to the third section of this article, the following 
.clause : " Provided, that no act or acts done by one or 
more of the States against the United States, or by 
any citizen of any one of the United States, under the 
authority of one or more of the said States, shall be 
deemed treason, or punished as such ; but, in case of 
war being levied by one or more of the States against 
the United States, the conduct of each party towards 
the other, and their adherents respectively, shall be 
regulated by the laws of war and of nations." 



84 SECRET PROCEEDINGS 

But this provision was not adopted, being too much 
opposed to the great object of many of the leading 
members of the convention, which was, by all means 
to leave the States at the mercy of the general gov- 
ernment, since they could not succeed in their imme- 
diate and entire abolition. 

By the third section of the fourth article, no new 
State shall be formed or erected within the jurisdiction 
of any other State, without the consent of the legisla- 
ture of such State. 

There are a number of States which are so circum- 
stanced, with respect to themselves and to the other 
States, that every principle of justice and sound policy 
require their dismemberment or division into smaller 
States. Massachusetts is divided into two districts, 
totally separated from each other by the State of New 
Hampshire, on the northeast side of which lie the 
Provinces of Maine and Sagadahoc, more extensive in 
point of territory, but less populous than old Massa- 
chusetts, which lies on the other side of New Hamp- 
shire. No person can cast his eye on the map of that 
State but he must in a moment admit, that every ar- 
gument drawn from convenience, interest, and justice, 
require, that the Provinces of Maine and Sagadahoc 
should be erected into a new Sfate, and that they 
should not be compelled to remain connected with old 
Massachusetts under all the inconveniences of their 
situation. 

The State of Georgia is larger in extent than the 
whole island of Great Britain, extending from its sea- 
coast to the Mississippi, a distance of eight hundred 
miles or more ; its breadth, for the most part, about 
three hundred miles. The States of North Carolina 
and Virginia, in the same manner, reach from the sea- 
coast unto the Mississippi. 



OF THE FEDERAL CONVENTION. 85 

The hardship, the inconvenience, and the injustice 
of compelling the inhabitants of those States who 
may dwell on the western side of the mountains, and 
along the Ohio and Mississippi rivers, to remain con- 
nected with the inhabitants of those States respective- 
ly, on the Atlantic side of the mountains, and subject 
to the same State governments, would be such, as 
would, in my opinion, justify even recourse to arms, 
to free themselves from, and to shake off, so ignomini- 
ous a yoke. 

This representation was made in convention, and it 
was further urged, that the territory of these States 
was too lai^e, and that the inhabitants thereof would 
be too much disconnected for a republican govern- 
ment to extend to them its benefits, which is only^ 
suited to a small and compact territory. That a 
regard, also, for the peace and safety of the Union 
ought to excite a desire, that those States should be- 
come in time divided into separate States, since, when 
their population should become proportioned in any de- 
gree to their territory, they would, from their strength 
and power, become dangerous members of a federal 
government. It was further said, that, if the general 
government was not by its constitution to interfere, 
the inconvenience would soon remedy itself, for that, 
as the population increased in those States, their legis- 
latures would be obliged to copsent to the erection of 
new States to avoid the evils of a civil war ; but as, 
by the proposed constitution, the general government 
is obliged to protect each State against domestic vio* 
lence, and, consequently, will be obliged to assist in 
suppressing such commotions and insurrections, as 
may take place from the struggle to have new States 
erected, the general government ought to havfe a pow- 
8 



^ 



86 SECRET PROCEEDINGS 

er to decide upon the propriety and necessity of estab- 
lishing or erecting a new State, even without the 
approbation of the legislature of such States, within 
whose jurisdiction the new State should be erected ; 
euad for this purpose I submitted to the convention 
the following proposition : " That, on the application 
of the inhabitants of any district of territory, within 
the limits of any of the States, it shall be lawful for 
the legislature of the United States, if they shall 
under all circumstances think it reasonable, to erect 
the same into a new State, and admit it into the 
Union, without the consent of the State of which 
the said district may be a part." And it was said^ 
that we surely might trust the general government 
with this power with more propriety than with many 
others, with which they were proposed to be intrust- 
ed ; and that, as the general government was bound 
to suppress edl insurrections and commotions, which 
might arise on this subject, it ought to be in the 
power of the general government to decide upon it, 
and not in the power of the legislature of a single 
State, by obstinately and unreasonably opposing the 
erection of a new State, to prevent its taking effect, 
and thereby extremely to oppress that part of its citi- 
zens which live remote from, and inconvenient to, 
the seat of its government, and even to involve the 
Union in war to support its injustice and oppression. 
But, upon the vote being taken, Georgia, South Caro- 
lina, North Carolina, Virginia, Pennsylvania, and Mas- 
sachusetts were in the negative. New Hampshire, 
Connecticut, Jersey, Delaware, and Maryland, were 
in the affirmative. New York was absent. 

That it was inconsistent with the rights of free and 
independent States, to have their territory dismem- 



OF THE FEDERAL CONVENTION. 87 

bered without their consent, was the principal argu- 
ment used by the opponents of this proposition. The 
truth of the objection we readily admitted, but at the 
same time insisted, that it was not more inconsistent 
with the rights of free and independent States, than 
that inequality of suffrage and power which the large 
States had extorted from the others ^ and that, if the 
smaller States yielded up their rights in that instance, 
they were entitled to demand from the States of 
extensive territory a surrender of their rights in this 
instance ; and in a particular manner, as it was equal- 
ly necessary for the true interest and happiness of the 
citizens of their own States, as of the Union. But, 
Sir, although, when the large States demanded undue 
and improper sacrifices to be made to their pride and 
ambition, they treated the rights of free States with 
more contempt, than ever a British Parliament treated 
the rights of her colonial estabhshments ; yet, when a 
reasonable and necessary sacrifice was asked from 
them, they spurned the idea with ineffable disdain. 
They then perfectly understood the full value and the 
sacred obligation of State rights, and at the least 
attempt to infringe them, where they were concerned, 
they were tremblingly alive, and agonized at every 
pore. 

When we reflect how obstinately those States con- 
tended for that unjust superiority of power in the 
government, which they have in part obtained, and 
for the establishment of this superiority by the con- 
stitution ; when we reflect that they appeared willing 
to hazard the existence of the Union, rather than not 
to succeed in their unjust attempt ; that, should their 
legislatures consent to the erection of new States 
within their jurisdiction, it would be an inmiediate 



88 SECRET PROCEEDINGS 

sacrifice of that power, to obtain which they appeared 
disposed to sacrifice every other consideration ; when 
we further reflect, that they now have a motive for 
desiring to preserve their territory entire and un- 
broken, which they never had before, — the gratificar 
tion of their ambition, in possessing and exercising 
superior power over their sister States, — and that this 
constitution is to give them the means to effect this 
desire, of which they were formerly destitute ; the 
whole force of the United States pledged to them for 
restraining intestine commotions, and preserving to 
them the obedience and subjection of their citizens, 
even in the extremest part of their territory ; — I say, 
Sir, when we consider these things, it would be too 
absurd and improbable to deserve a serious answer, 
should any person suggest, that these States mean 
ever to give their consent to the erection of new 
States within their territory. Some of them, it . is 
true, have been for some time past amusing their in- 
habitants, in those districts that wished to be erected 
into new States ; but, should this constitution be adopt- 
ed, armed with a sword and halter to compel their 
obedience and subjection, they will no longer act 
with indecision; and the State of Maryland may, 
and probably will, be called upon to assist, with her 
wealth and her blood, in subduing the inhabitants of 
Franklin, Kentucky, Vermont, and the provinces of 
Maine and Sagadahoc, and in compelling them to 
continue in subjection to the States which respective- 
ly claim jurisdiction over them. 

Let it not be forgotten at the same time, that a 
great part of the territory of these large and extensive 
States, which they now hold in possession, and over 
which they now claim and exercise jurisdiction, were 



OF THE FEDERAL CONVENTION. 89 

crown lands, unlocated and unsettled when the Amer- 
ican revolution took place, — lands which were ac- 
quired by the common blood and treasure, and which 
ought to have been the common stocky and for the 
common benefit of the Union. Let it be remembered, 
that the State of Maryland was so deeply sensible of 
the injustice that these lands should be held by par- 
ticular States for their own emolument, even at a 
time when no superiority of authority or power was 
annexed to extensive territory, that, in the midst of 
the late war and all the dangers which threatened us, 
it withheld, for a long time, its assent to the articles 
of confederation for that reason ; and, when it rati- 
fied those articles, it entered a solemn protest against 
what it considered so flagrant injustice. But, Sir, the 
question is not now, whether those States shall hold 
that territory unjustly to themselves, but whether, by 
that act of injustice, they shall have superiority of 
power and influence over the other States, and have 
a constitutional right to domineer and lord it over 
them. Nay, more, whether we will agree to a form 
of government, by which we pledge to those States 
the whole force of the Union, to preserve to them 
their extensive territory entire and unbroken ; and, 
with our blood and wealth, to assist them, whenever 
they please to demand it, to preserve the inhabitants 
thereof under their subjection, for ■ the purpose of 
increasing their superiority over us, — of gratifying 
their unjust ambition, — in a word, for the purpose of 
giving ourselves masters, and of riveting our chains ! 
The part of the system which provides, that no 
religious test shall ever be required as a qualification 
to any ofiice or public trust under the United States, 
was adopted by a great majority of the convention, 
8* 



:• ^ .w . 



90 SECRET PROCEEDINGS 

and "vlrithout much debate ; however, there were some 
members so mifashionable as to think, that a beUef of 
the existence of a Deity, and of a state of future re- 
wards and punishments would be some security for 
the good conduct of our rulers, and that, in a Christian 
country, it would be at least decent to hold out some 
distinction between the professors of Christianity and 
downright infidelity or paganism. 

The seventh article declares, that the ratification of 
nine States shall be sufficient for the establishment of 
this constitution, between the States ratifying the 

It was attempted to obtain a resolve, that, if seven 
States, whose votes in the first branch should amount 
to a majority of the representation in that branch, 
concurred in the adoption of the systemi it should be 
sufficient; and this attempt was supported on the 
principle, that a majority ought to govern the minori- 
ty ; but to this it was objected, that, although it was 
true, after a constitution and form of government is 
agreed on, in every act done under and consistent with 
that constitution and form of government, the act of 
the majority, unless otherwise agreed in the constitu- 
tion, should bind the minority, yet it was directly the 
reverse in originally forming a constitution, or dissolv- 
ing it; that, in originally forming a constitution, it 
^hs necessary that every individual should agree to 
it, to become bound thereby; and that, when once 
adopted, it could not be dissolved by consent, unless 
with the consent of every individual who was party 
to the original agreement ; that in forming our original 
federal government, every member of that govern- 
ment, that is, each State, expressly consented to it ; 
that it is a part of the compact made and entered into, 



OF THE FEDERAL CON^TENTION. 91 

ia the most solemn manner^ that there should be no 
dissolution or alteration of that federal government, 
without the consent of every State, the members of, 
and parties to, the original compact ; that, therefore, 
no alteration could be made by a consent of a part of 
these States, or by the consent of the inhabitants of a 
part of the States, which could either release the States 
so consenting from the obligation they are under to 
the other States, or which could. in any manner be- 
come obligatory upon those States that should not 
ratify such alterations. Satisfied of the truth of these 
positions, and not holding ourselves at liberty to violate 
the compact, which this State had solemnly entered 
into with the others, by altering it in a difierent man- 
ner from that which by the same compact is provided 
and stipulated, a number of the members, and among 
those the delegation of this State, opposed the ratifica- 
tion of this system in any other manner, than by the 
unanimous consent and agreement of all the States. 

By our original articles of confederation, any altera- 
tions proposed are, in the first place, to be approved by 
Congress. Accordingly, as the resolutions were orig- 
inally adopted by the convention, and as they were 
reported by thfe committee of detail, it was proposed 
that this system should be laid before Congress for its ' 
approbation. But, Sir, the warm advocates of this 
system, fearing it would not meet with the approba- 
tion of Congress, anjl determined, even though Coi>- 
gress and the respective State legislatures should dis- 
approve the same, to force it upon them, if possible, 
through the intervention of the people at large, moved 
to strike out the words "for their approbation," and 
succeeded in their motion ; to which, it being directly 
in violation of the mode prescribed by the articles of 



92 SECRET PROCEEDINGS 

confederation for the alteration of our federal govern- 
ment, a part of the convention, and myself in the 
number, thought it a duty to give a decided negative. 

Agreeably to the articles of confederation, entered 
into in the most solemn manner, and for the obser- 
vance of which the States pledged themselves to each 
other, and called upon the Supreme Being as a witness 
and avenger between them, no alterations are to be 
made in those articles, unless,, after they are approved 
by Congress, they are agreed to and ratified by the- 
legislature of every State ; but, by the resolve of the 
convention, this constitution is not to be ratified by 
the legislatures of the respective States, but is to be 
submitted to conventions chosen by the people, and, 
if ratified by them, is to be binding. 

This resolve was opposed, among others, by the 
delegation of Maryland. Your delegates were of 
opinion, that, as the form of government proposed 
was, if adopted, most essentially to alter the constitu- 
tion of this State ; and as our constitution had pointed 
out a mode by which, and by which only, alterations 
were to be made therein, a convention of the people 
could not be called to agree to and ratify the said form 
of government, without a direct violation of our con- 
stitution, which it is the duty of every individual in 
this State to protect and support. In this opinion, all 
your delegates who were attending were unanimous. 
I, Sir, opposed it also upon a more extensive ground, 
as being directly contrary to the mode of altering our 
federal government, established in our original com- 
pact ; and, as such, being a direct violation of the mu- 
tual faith plighted by the States to each other, I gave 
it my negative. 

I was also of opinion, that the States, considered as 






OF THE FEDERAL CONVENTION. 93 

States, in their political capacity, are the members of 
a federal goverament ; that the States, in their polit- 
ical capacity, or as sovereignties, are entitled, and only 
entitled originally to agree upon the form of, and submit 
themselves to, a federal government, and afterwards, 
by mutual consent, to dissolve or alter it ; that every 
thing which relates to the formation, the dissolution, 
or the alteration of a federal government over States 
equally free, sovereign, and independent, is the pecu- 
liar province of the States, in their sovereign or polit- 
ical capacity, in the same manner as what relates to 
forming alliances or treaties of peace, amity, or com- 
merce ; and that the people at large, in their individual 
capacity, have no more right to interfere in the one 
case than in the other. That according to these 
principles we wiginally acted, in forming our confed- 
eration ; it was the States, as States, by their repre- 
sentatives in Congress, that formed the articles of 
confederation ; it was the States, as States, by their 
legislatures, who ratified those articles; and it was 
there established and provided, that the States, as 
States, that is, by their legislatures, should agree to 
any alterations that should hereafter be proposed in the 
federal government, before they should be binding ; 
and any alterations agreed to in any other manner, 
cannot release the States from the obligation they are 
under to each other, by virtue of the original articles 
of confederation. The people of the diflTerent States 
never made any objection to the manner the articles 
of confederation were formed or ratified, or to the 
mode by which alterations were to be made in that 
government ; with the rights of their respective States 
they wished not to interfere. Nor do I believe the 
people, in their individual capacity, would ever have 



u.. 



94 SECRET PROCEEDINGS 

expected or desired to have been appealed to, on the 
jaresent occasion, in violation of the rights of their re- 
spective States, if the favorers of the proposed consti- 
tution, imagining they had a better chance of forcing 
it to be adopted by a hasty appeal to the people at 
large, who could not be so good judges of the danger- 
ous consequence, had not insisted upon this mode. Nor 
do these positions in the least interfere with the prin- 
ciple, that all power originates from the people ; be- 
cause, when once the people have exercised their 
power in establishing, and forming themselves into a 
State government, it never devolves back to them, nor 
have they a right to' resume or again to exercise that 
power, until such events take place as will amount to 
a dissolution of their State government. And it is an 
established principle, that a dissolution or alteration of 
a federal government doth not dissolve the State gov- 
ernments which compose it. It was also my opinion, 
that, upon principles of sound policy, the agreement or 
disagreement to the proposed system ought to have 
been by the State legislatures j in which case, let the 
event have been what it would, there would have 
been but little prospect of the public peace being dis- 
turbed thereby. Whereas, the attempt to force down 
this system, although Congress and the respective State 
legislatures should disapprove, by appealing to the peo- 
ple, and to procure its establishment in a manner totally 
unconstitutional, has a tendency to set the State gov- 
ernments and their subjects at variance with each 
other, to lessen the obligations of government, to 
weaken the bands of society, to introduce anarchy 
and confusion, and to light the torch of discord and 
civil war throughout this continent. All these consid- 
erations weighed with me most forcibly against giving 



OF THE FEDERAL CONVENTION. 95 

my assent to the mode by which it is resolved this 
system is to be ratified, and were urged by me in op- 
position to the measure. 

I have now, Sir, in discharge of the duty I owe to 
this House, given such information as hath occurred 
to^me, which I consider most material for them to 
know ; and you will easily perceive, from this detail, 
that a great portion of that time, which ought to have 
been devoted calmly and impartially to consider what 
alterations in oUr federal government would be most 
likely to procure and preserve the happiness of the 
Union, was employed in a violent struggle on the one 
side to obtain all power and dominion in their own 
hands, juid on the other to prevent it ; and that the 
aggrandizement of particular States and particular in- 
dividuals, appears to have been much more the object 
sought after, than the welfare of our country. 

The interest of this State, not confined merely to 
itself, abstracted from all others, but considered rela- 
tively, as far as was consistent with the common in- 
terest of the other States, I thought it my duty to 
pursue, according to the best opinion I could form 
of it. 

When I took my seat in the convention, I found it 
attempting to bring forward a system, which I was 
sure never had entered into the contemplation of those 
I had the honor to represent, and which, upon the 
fullest consideration, I considered not only injurious 
to the interest and the rights of this State, but also 
incompatible with the political happiness and freedom* 
of the States in general. Prom that time until my 
business compelled me to leave the convention, I gave 
it every possible opposition, in every stage of its pro- 
gression. I opposed the system there with the same 



96 SECRET PROCEEDINGS 

explicit frankness with which I have here given yoa 
a histoiy of onr proceedings ; an account of my own 
conduct, which in a particular manner I consider yoti. 
as haying a right to know. While there, I endeav- 
oured to act as became a free man, and the del^ate 
of a free State. Should my c<Hiduct obtain the a{q[so- 
bation of those who a{^inted me, I will not deny it 
would afford me satisfaction ; but to me that ap]Ht>ba- 
tion was at most no more than a secondary considera- 
tion ; my first was to deserve it. Left to myself, to 
act according to the best of my discretion, my conduct 
should have been the same, had I been even sure your 
censure would have been my (mly reward; since I 
hold it sacredly my duty to dash the cup of poison, if 
possible, from the hand ci a State, or an individual, 
however amdous the one or the other might be to 
swallow it. 

Indulge me. Sir, in a single observation further. 
There are persons who endeavour to hold up the idea, 
that this system is only opposed by the officers of gov- 
ernment. I, Sir, am in that predicament. I have the 
honor to hold an appointment in this State. Had it 
been considered any objection, I presume I should not 
have been appointed to the convention. K it could 
have had any effect on my mind, it would only be 
that of warming my heart with gratitude, and render- 
ing me more anxious to promote the true interest of 
that State which has conferred on me the obligation, 
and to heighten my guilt had I joined in sacrificing its 
essential rights. But, Sir, it would be well to remem- 
ber, that this system is not calculated to diminish the 
number or the value of offices ; on the contrary, if 
adopted, it will be productive of an enormous increase 
in their numb^ ; many of them will be also of great 



^ "-.■*•*. 

OF THE FEDERAL CONVENj;iaN. ' 07 

'.* ■'.■ * ■ 

honor and emoluments. Whether, Sir, in this variety 
of appointments, and in the Scramble for them, I might 
not have as good a prospect to advantage myself as 
many others, is not for me to say ; but this. Sir, I can 
say with truth, that, so far was I from being influenced 
in my conduct by interest, or the consideration of 
office, that I would cheerfully resign the appointment 
I now hold ; I would bind myself never to accept 
another, either under the general government or that 
of my own State. I would do more, Sir ; — so destruc- 
tive do I consider the present system to the happiness 
of my country, I would cheerfully sacrifice that share 
of property with which Heaven has blessed a life of 
industry; I would reduce myself to indigence and 
poverty, and those who are dearer to me than my own 
existence I would intrust to the care and protection of 
that Providence, which, hath so kindly protected my- 
self, if on those terms only I could procure my country 
to reject those chains which are forged for it. 



SECRET DEBATES 

or THE 

FEDERAL CONVENTION. 



Notes of the Secret Debates of the Federal Convention of 
1787, taken by the late Hon. ROBERT YATES, Chief Jus- 
tice OF THE State of New York, and one of the Delegates 
from that Stats to the said ' Convention. 



FRIDAY, MAY. SStbt, 1787. 

Attended the convention of the States, at the State 
House in Philadelphia, when the following States 
were represented : 



New York, 
New Jersey, 



Pennsylvania, 



Delaware, 



Virginia, 



Alexander Hamilton, 
Robert Yates. 
David Brearley, 
William Churchill Houston, 
William Patterson. 
Robert Morris, 
Thomas Pitzsinpions, 
James Wilson,- , 
Gouverneur Morris. 
George Read, 
Richard Bassett, 
Jacob Broom. 
George. Washington, 
Edmund Randolph, 
George Wythe, 



1(W SECRET PROCEEDINGS 

Qeorge Mason, 

James Madison, 

John Blair, 

James M'Clurg. 
North Carolina, Alexander Martin, 

William Richardson Davie, 

Richard Dobbs Spaight, 

Hugh Williamson. 
South Carolina, John Rutledge, 

Charles Cotesworth Pinckney, 

Charles Pinckney, 

Pierce Butler. 

A motion by R. Morris, and seconded, that Gen- 
eral Washington take the chair, unanimously agreed 
to. 

WTien seated, he (General Washington) declared, 
that, as he had never been in such a situation, he felt 
himself embarrassed ; that he hoped his errors, as they 
would be unintentional, would be excused. . 

Mr. HamdltonjinhehBii of the State of New York, 
moved, that Major Jackson be appointed secretary ; 
the delegates for Pennsylvania moved for Temple 
Pr^klin; by a majority Mr. Jackson carried it. — 
Called in and took his seat. 

After which, the respective credentials of the seven 
States were read. N. B. Thdt of Delaware restrained 
its delegates from assenting to an abolition of the fifth 
article of the confederation, by which it is declared, 
that each State shall have one vote. 

Door-keeper and messengers being appointed, the 
House adjourned to Monday, the 28th day of May, at 
ten o'clock. 



V 



OF THE FEDERAL CONVENTION. 101 

MONDAY, MAY 28th, 1787. 

Met pursuant to adjournment. 

A committee of three members (whose appointment 
I omitted in the entry of the proceedings of Friday 
last) reported a set of rules for the order of the con- 
vention, which, being considered by articles, were 
agreed to, and additional ones proposed and referred to 
the same committee. The representation was this day 
increased to nine States, Massachusetts and Connecti- 
cut becoming represented. 

Adjourned to next day. 

TUESDAY, MAY 29th, 1787. 

The additional rules agreed to. 

His excellency Governor Randolph, 9, member from 
Virginia, got up; and, in a long and elaborate speech, 
showed the defects in the s'ystem of the present fed- 
eral government, as totally^ inadequate to the peace, 
safety, and security of the confederation, and the ab- 
solute necessity of a more energetic government. 

He closed these rem^ks with a set of resolutions, 
fifteen in number, which he proposed to the conven- 
tion for their adoption, and as leading principles where- 
on to form a new government. He candidly confessed, 
that they were not intended for a federal government ; 
he meant a strong, consolidated union, in which the 
idea of States should be nearly annihilated. [I have 
taken a copy of these resolutions, which are hereunto 
annexed.] 

He then moved, that they should be taken lip in 
committee of the whole House. 

Mr. C. Pinckney, a membef from South Carolina, 

then added, that he had reduced his ideas of a new 
9# 



102 SECRET PROCEEDINGS 

government to a system, which he read, and confessed 
that it was groimded on the same principle as that of 
the above resolutions. 

The House then resolved, that they would the next 
day form themselves into a committee of the whole, 
to take into consideration the state of the Union. 

Adjourned to next day. 

WEDNESDAY, MAY 30th, 1787. 

Convention met pursuant to adjournment. 

The convention, pursuant to order, resolved itself 
into a committee of the whole, — Mr. Gorham, a 
member from Massachusetts, appointed chairman. 

Mr. Randolph then moved his first resolve, to wit : 
" Resolved, that the articles of the confederation ought 
to be so corrected and enlarged, as to accomplish the 
objects proposed by their institution, namely, common 
defence, security of liberty, and general welfare." 

Mr. G. Morris observed, that it was an unneces- 
sary resolution, as the subsequent resolutions would 
not agree with it. It was then withdrawn by the 
proposer, and in lieu thereof the following were pro- 
posed, to wit : 

" 1. Resolved J That a union of the States, merely 
federal, will not accomplish the objects proposed by 
the articles of the confederation, namely, common de- 
fence, security of liberty, and general welfare. 

" 2. Resolved, That no treaty or treaties among any 
of the States, as sovereign, will accomplish or secure 
their common defence, liberty, or welfare. 

"3. Resolved, That a national government ought 
to be established, cpnsisting of a supreme judicial, 
legislative, and executive." 

In considering the question on the first resolve, vari- 



OF THE FEDERAL CONVENTION. 103 

ous modifications were proposed, when Mr, Pinckney 
observed, at last, that, if the convention agreed to it, 
it appeared to him that their business was at an end ; 
for, as the powers of the House in general were to re- 
vise the present confederation, and to alter or amend 
it, as the case might require, to determine. its insuf- 
ciency or incapability of amendment or improvement, 
must end in the dissolution of the powers. 

This remark had its weight, and, in consequence of 
it, the first and second resolves were dropped, and the 
question agitated on the third. 

This last resolve had also its difficulties. The term 
supreme required explanation. It was asked, whether 
it was intended to annihilate State governments ? It 
was answered, only so far as the powers intended to 
be granted to the new government should clash with 
the States, when the latter was to yield. . 

For the resolution, — Massachusetts, Pennsylvania, 
Delaware, Virginia, North Carohna, South Carolina. 

Against it, -— Connecticut, New -York divided, New 
Jersey, and the other States unrepresented. 

The next question was on the following resolve : 

In substance, that the mode of the present represen- 
tation was unjust, — the suffrage ought to be in pro- 
portion to number or property. 

To this Delaware objected, "in consequence of the 
restrictions in their credentials, and moved to have the 
consideration thereof postponed, to which the House 
agreed. 

Adjourned to to-morrow. 

THURSDAY, MAY 3l8T, 1787. 

Met purstiant to adjournment. 
This day the State of Jersey was represented, so 
that there were now ten States in convention. 



104 SECRET PROGEEDGNfiS 

The House went again into committee of the nrhole, 
Mr. Gorham in the chair. 

The third resolve, to wit, " That the national legis* 
lature ought to consist of two branches," was taken 
into consideration, and without any debate agreed to, 
[N. B. As a previous resolution had already been 
agreed to, to have a supreme legislature; I could not 
see any objection to its being in two branches.] 

The fourth resolve, " That the members of the first 
branch .of the national legislature ought to be elected 
by the people of the several States," was opposed j 
and, strange to tell, by Massachusetts and Connecticut, 
who supposed they ought to be chosen by the legisla- 
tures; and Virginia supported the resolve, alleging, 
that this ought to be the democratic branch of govern- 
ment, and, as such, immediately vested in the people. 

This question was carried, but the remaining part 
of the resolve, detailing the powers, was postponed. 

The fifth resolve. That the members of the second 
branch of the national legislature ought to be elected 
by those of the first, out of a proper number of persons 
nominated by the individual legislatures, and the de- 
tail of the mode of election, and duration of office, was 
postponed. 

The sixth resolve is taken in detail : " That each 
branch ought to possess the right of originating acts." ' 
Agreed to. 

" That the national legislature ought to be empow- 
ered to enjoy the legislative rights vested in Congress 
by the confederation." Agreed to. 

" And, moreover, to legislate in all cases to which 
the separate States are incompetent." Agreed to. 



or THS FJEDEBAL CONVENTION. 105 

* * •- ' 

* • ■'■ ■'''' , 

FRIDAY, JUNfi IsT, 1787. 

Met pursuant to adjournment. 

The seventh resolve, that a national executive be 
instituted. Agreed to. ^: 

To continue in office for seven years. Agreed to. 

A general authoritv to execute the laws. Agreed 
to. 

To appoint all officers not otherwise provided for. . 
Agreed to. 

Adjourned to the next day. 

SATURDAY, JQNE 2d, 1787. 

Met pursuant to adjournment ^ Present, eleven 
States. 

Mr.. Pinckney oalfed for the order of the day. 

The convention went into committee of the whole. • 

Mr. Wilson moved, that the States should be di- 
vided into districts, consisting of one or more States, 
and each district to elect a number of senators, to form 
the second branch of the national legislature. The 
senators to be elected, and a certain proportion to be 
annually dismissed, — avowedly on the plan of the 
New York Senate. Cluestion put. ^ Rejected. 

In the seventh resolve, the words " to be chosen by 
the national legislature,'* were agreed to. 

President Franklin moved, that the consideration 
of that part o{ the seventh resolve, which had in ob- 
ject the making provision for a compensation for the 
service of the executive, be postponed for the purpose 
of considering a motion, " That the executive should 
receive no salary, stipend, or emolument for the devo- 
tion of his time to the public services, but that his 
' expenses should be paid." Postponed. 



106 SECRET PROCEEDINGS 

Mr. Dickinson moved, that, in the seventh resolu- 
tion, the words " and removable on impeachment and 
conviction for mal-conduct or neglect in the execution 
of his office," should be inserted after the words "in- 
eligible a second time." Agreed to. The remainder 
postponed. 

Mr, Butler moved to fill the number of which the 
executive should consists 

Mr, Randolph, The sentiments of the people 
ought to be consvilted. They will not hear of the 
semblance of monarchy. He preferred three divisions 
of the States, and an executive to be taken from each. 
If a single executive, those remote from him would be 
neglected ; local views would be attributed to him, — 
frequently well-founded, often without reason. This 
would excite disaffection. ITe was, therefore, for an 
executive of three. 

Mr. Butler, Delays, divisions, and dissensions 
arise from an executive consisting of many. Instance 
Holland's distracted state, occasioned by her many 
counsellors. Further consideration postponed. 

Mr, C, Pinckney gave notice for the reconsideiatioii 
of the mode of election of the first branch. 

Adjourned till Monday next. 

MONDAY, JUNE 4th, 1787. 

Met pursuant to adjournment. 

Mr, Pinckney moved, that the blank in the seventh 
resolve, " consisting of ," be filled up with an 

individual. 

Mr, Wilson, in support of the motion, asserted, that 
it would not be obnoxious to the minds of the people, 
as they, in their State governments, were accustomed 
and reconciled to a single executive. Three execu- 



OF THE F£D£11AL CONVENTION. 107 

tives might divide so that two coiild not agree in one 
proposition ; the consequence would be anarchy and 
confusion. 

Mr: Sherman thought there ought to be one exec- 
utive, but that he ought to have a council. Even the 
king of Great Britain has his privy council. 

Mr. Gerry was for one executive ; if otherwise, it 
would be absurd to have it consist of three. Numbers 
equally in rank would oddly apply to a general or 
admiral. 

Question put. Seven States for, and three against. 
New York against it. '• 

The eighth resolve. That the executive and a num- 
ber of the judicial officers ought to compose a council 
of revision. 

Mr, Gerry objects to the clause. Moves its post- 
ponement, in order to let in a motion, " That the right 
of revision should be in the executive only." 

Mr. Wilson contends, that the executive and judi- 
cial ought to have a joint and full negative; they^ 
cannot otherwise preserve their importance against the 
legislature. 

Mr. King was against the interference of the judi- 
cial. They may be biassed in the interpretation. He 
is, therefore, to give the executive a complete negative. 

Carried to be postponed, six States against four. 
New York for it. 

The next question, that the executive have a com- 
plete negative ; and it was therefore moved to expunge 
the remaining part of the clause. 

Dr. Franklin against the motion. The power 
dangerous, and would be abused so as to get money 
for passing bills. 

Mr, Madison .against it, because of the difficulty 



108 SECltET PROCEEDINGS 

of an executive venturing on the exercise of this neg- 
ative ; and is therefore of opinion^ that the revisional 
authority is better. 

Mr. Bedford is against the whole, either negative 
or revisional ; the two branches are sufficient checks 
on each other ; no danger of subverting the executive, 
because his powers may by the convention be so well 
defined, that the legislature cannot overleap the 
bounds. < 

Mr. Mason against the negative power in the ex- ^ 
ecmtive, because it will not accorcl with the genius of 
the people. 

On this the question was put and carried, nem. con.^ 
against expunging part of the clause, so as to establish 
a complete negative. 

Mr. Butler then moved, that all acts passed by the 
legislature be suspended for the space of days by 

the executive. - ' - - 

Unanimously in the negative. 

It was resolved and agreed, that the blank be filled 
up with the words "two thirds of tlie legislature." 
Agreed to. 

The question was then put on the whole of the re- 
solve as amended and filled up. Carried ; eight States 
for, two against. New York for it. 

Mr. Wilson then moved for flie addition of a con- 
venient number of the national judicial to the execu- 
tive, as a council of revision. Ordered to be taken 
into consideration to-morrow. 

Adjourned until to-morrow. 

TUESDAY, JUNE 5th, 1787. 

Met pursuant to adjournment. ' 
The ninth resolve, "That a national judicial be 
established, to consist of one supreme tribunal, and of 



OF THE FEDERAL CONVENTION. 109 

inferior tribunals, to hold their offices during good be- 
haviour, and no augmentation or diminution in the 
stipends during the time of holding their offices. 
Agreed to. 

Mr. Wilson moved, that the judicial be appointed 
by the executive, instead of the national legislature. 

Mr, Madison opposed the motion, and inclined to 
think, that the executive ought by no means to make 
the appointments, but rather that branch of the legis- 
lature called the senatorial ; and moves, that the words 
" of the appointment of the legislature," be expunged. 

Carried by eight States ; against it, two. 

The remaining piart of the resolve postponed. 

The tenth resolve read and agreed to. 

The eleventh resolve agreed to be postponed. 

The twelfth resolve agreed to without debate. 

The thirteenth and fourteenth resolves postponed. 

The fifteenth or last resolve, " That the amendment 
which shall be offered to the confederation, ought, at 
a proper time or times, after the approbation of Con- 
gress, to be submitted to an assembly or assemblies of 
representatives, recommended by the several legisla- 
tures, to be expressly chosen by the people, to consider 
and decide thereon," was taken into consideration. 

Mr, Madison endeavoured to enforce the necessity 
of this resolve, because the new national constitution 
ought to have the highest source of authority, at least 
paramount to the powers of the respective constitutions 
of the States ; points out the mischiefs that have 
arisen in the old confederation, which depends upon 
no higher authority than the confirmation of an ordi- 
nary act of a legislature ; instances the law operation 
of treaties, when contravened by any antecedent acts 
of a particular State. 
10 



110 SECRET PROCEEDINGS 

Mr. King supposes, that, as the people have tacitly 
agreed to a federal government, therefore the legisla- 
ture in every State have a right to confirm any altera- 
tions or amendments in it ; a convention in each State 
to approve of a new government, he supposes, how- 
ever, the most eligible. 

Mr, Wilson is of opinion, that the people, by a coa- 
vention, are the only power that can ratify the pro- 
posed system of the new government. 

It is possible, that not all the States, nay, that not 
even a majority, will immediately come into the 
measure ; but such as do ratify it will be immediately 
bound by it, and others as they may from time to time 
accede to it. 

Question put for postponement of this resolve. 
Seven States for postponement, three against it. 

Question on the ninth resolve, to strike out the 
words " and of inferior tribunals." 

Carried by five States against four ; two States di- 
vided, of which last number New York was one. 

Mr. Wilson then moved, " that the national legis- 
lature shall have the authority to appoint inferior tri- 
bunals," be added to this resolve. 

Carried by seven States against three. New York 
divided. [N. B. Mr. Lansing, from" New York, was 
prevented by sickness from attending this day.] 

Adjourned to to-morrow morning. 

WEDNESDAY, JUNE 6th, 1787. 

Met pursuant to adjournment. 

Mr, Pinckney moved, (pursuant to a standing . order 
for reconsideration,) that, in the fourth resolve, the 
words " by the people," be expunged, and the words 
** by the legislature," be inserted. 



OF THE FEDERAL CONVENTION. Ill 

Mr. Gerry, If the national legislature are appoint- 
ed by the State legislatures, demagogues and corrupt 
members will creep in. 

Mr, Wilson is of opinion, that the national legisla- 
tive powers ought to flow immediately from the people, 
so as to contain all their understanding, and to be an 
exact transcript of their minds. He observed, that the 
people had already parted with as much of their power 
as was necessary, to form on its basis a perfect govern- 
ment; and the particular States must part with such 
a portion of it, as to make the present national govern- 
ment adequate to their peace and the security of their 
liberties. He admitted, that the State governments 
would probably be rivals and opposers of the national 
government. 

Mr. Mason observed, that the national legislature, 
as to one branch, ought to be elected by the people ; 
because the objects of their legislation will not be on 
States, but on individual persons. 

Mr. Dickinson is for combining the State and na- 
tionallegislatures in the same views and measures, and 
that this objeot can only be effected by the national 
legislature flowing from the State legislatures. 

Mr. Read is of opinion, that the State governments - 
must sooner or later be at an end, and that therefore 
we must make the present national government as 
perfect as possible. 

Mr. Madison is of opinion, that, when we agreed 
to the first resolve of having a national government, 
consisting of a supreme executive, judicial, and legis- 
lative' power, it was then intended to operate to the 
exclusion of a federal government, and the more ex- 
tensive we made the basis, the greater probability of 
duration, happiness, and good order. 



112 SECRET PROCEEDINGS 

The question for the amendment was negatived, by 
eight States against three. New York in the ma- 
jority. 

On the eighth resolve, Mr. Wilson moved, (in con- 
sequence of a vote to reconsider the question on the 
revisional powers vested in the executive,) that there 
be added these words, "with a convenient number of 
the national judicial." 

Upon debate, carried in the negative ; three States 
for, and eight against. New York for the addition. 

Adjourned to to-morrow morning. 

THURSDAY, JUNE 7th, 1787. 

Met pursuant to adjournment. 

Mr. Rutledge moved to take into consideration the 
mode of electing the second branch of the national 
legislature. 

Mr. Dickinson thereupon moved, " that the second 
branch of the national legislature be chosen by the 
legislatures of the individual States. He observed, 
that this mode will more intimately connect the State 
governments with the national legislature ; it will also 
draw forth the first characters, either as to family or 
talent, and that it ought to consist of a considerable 
number. 

Mr. Wilson against the motion, because the two 
branches thus constituted, cannot agree, they having 
diflFerent views and different sentiments. 

Mr. Dickinson is of opinion, that the mode by him 
proposed, like the British House of Lords and Com- 
mons, whose powers flow from different sources, are 
mutual checks on each other, and will thus promote 
the real happiness and security of the country. A gov- 
ernment thus established, would harmonize the whole ; 



OF THE FEDERAL CONVE>ITION. 113 

and, like the planetary system, the national council, 
like the sun, would illuminate the whole, — the plan- 
ets revolving round it in perfect order ; or, like the ^ 
union of several small streams, would at last form a 
respectable river, gently flowing to the sea. 

Mr. Wilson. The State governments ought to 
be preserved. The freedom, of the people, and their 
internal good police, depends on their existence in full 
vigor ; but such a government can only answer local 
purposes. That it is not posdble a general govern- 
ment, as despotic as even that of the Roman emperors, 
could be adequate to the^ government of the whole, 
without this distinction. He hoped that the national 
government would be independent of State govern- 
ments, in order to make it vigorous, and therefore 
moved, that the above resolution be postponed, and, 
that the convention, in its room, adopt the following 
resolve ; " That the second branch of the national 
legislature be chosen by districts, to be formed for that 
purpose." 

Mr. Sherman supposes the election of the national 
legislature will be better vested in the State legisla- 
tures than in the people; for, by pursuing different 
objects, persons may be returned who have not one 
tenth of the votes. 

Mr. Gerry observed, that the great mercantile in- 
terest, and of stockholders, is not provided for in any 
mode of election ; they will, however, be better repre- 
sented, if the State legislatures choose the second 
branch. 

Question carried against the postponement; ten 
States against one. 

Mr. Mason then spoke to the general question ; ob- 
scrlring on the propriety, that the second branch of 
10* 



114 . SlitRET PROCEEDINGS 

the national legislature should flow from the legisla- 
ture of each State, to prevent the encroachments on 
^ach other, and to harmonize the whole. 

The question put on the first motion, and carried 
unanimously. 

Adjourned to to-morrow morning. 

FRIDAY, JUNE 8iffl, 1787. 

Met pursuant to adjournment. Eleven States. 

Mr, Pinckney moved, " That the national legislature 
shall have the power of negativing all laws to be 
passed by the State legislatures which they may judge 
improper," in the room of the clause as it stood re- 
ported. 

He grounds his motion on the necessity of one su- 
preme, controlling power, and he considers this as the 
corner-stone of the present system; and hence the 
necessity of retrenching the State authorities, in order 
to preserve the good government of the national 
council. 

Mr. Williamson against the motion. The national 
legislature ought/ to possess the power of negativing 
such laws only as will encroach on the national gov- 
ernment. 

Mr, ibf arf«son wished, that the line of jurisprudence 
could be drawn ; he would be for it ; but upon reflec- 
tion, he finds it impossible, and therefore he is for the 
amendment. If the clause remains without the amend- 
ment, it is inefficient. The judges of the State must 
give the State laws their operation, although the law 
abridges the rights of the national government. How 
is it to be repealed? — by the power which made it? 
How shall you compel them? — by force? To pre- 
vent this disagreeable expedient, the power of nega- 



OF THE FEDERAL CONVENTION. 116 

tiving is absolutely necessary. This is the only 
attractive principle which will retain its centrifugal 
force J and without this, the planets t^ill fly from thmrr- 
orbits. 

Mr, Gerry supposes, that this power ought to ex- 
tend to all laws already made ; but the preferable 
mode would be, to designate the powers of the national 
legislature, to which the negative ought to apply. He 
has no objection to restrain the laws which may be 
made for issuing paper money. Upon the whole he 
does not choose, on this important trust, to " take a leap 
in the dark." .- 

Mr. PmcArney supposes, that the proposed amend- 
ment had no retrospect to the State laws already made. 
The adoption of the new government must operate as 
a complete repeal of all the constitutions and State 
laws, as far as they ai^e inconsistent with the new gov- 
ernment. 

Mr, Wilson supposes the surrender of the rights of 
a federal government to be a surrender of sovereignty.* 
True, we may define some of the rights, but when we 
come near the line, it cannot be found. One general 
excepting clause must, therefore, apply to the whole. 
In the beginning of our troubles. Congress themselves 
were as one State ; dissensions or State interests were 
not known ; they gradually crept in after the formation 
of the constitution, and each took to himself a slice. 
The original draft of confederation was drawn on the 
first ideas, and the draft concluded on how different ! 

Mr, Bedford was against the. motion, and states the 
proportion of the intended representation of the num- 
ber ninety. Delaware one,. Pennsylvania and Virginia • 
one third. On this computation, where is the weight 
of the small States, when the interest of the one is in 



116 SECRET PROCEEDINGS 

competition with the other on trade, manufactures, 
and agriculture ? When he sees this mode of govern- 
ment so strongly advocated by the members of the 
great States, he must suppose it a question of interest. 

Mr. Madison confesses it" is not without its diffi- 
culties on many accounts; some may be i-emoved, 
others modified, and some are unavoidable. May not 
this power be vested in the senatorial branch ? They 
will probably be always sitting. Take the question 
on the other ground, who is to determine the line 
when drawn in doubtful cases ? The State legislatures 
cannot, for they will be partial in support of their own 
powers ; no tribunal can be found. It is impossible 
that the articles of confederation can be amended ; 
they are too tottering to be invigorated ; nothing but 
the present system, or something like it, can restore 
the peace and harmony of the country. 

The question put on Mr. Pinckney's motion ; seven 
States against it. Delaware divided. Virginia, Penn- 
sylvania, and Massachusetts for it. 

Adjourned to to-morrow morning. 

SATURDAY, JUNE 9th, 1787. 

Met pursuant to adjournment. 

Motion by Mr, Gerry to reconsider the appointment 
of the national executive. 

" That the national executive be appointed by the 
State executives." 

He supposed, that in the national legislature there 
will be a great number of bad men of various de- 
scriptions; these will make a wrong appointment. Be- 
sides, an executive thus appointed, will have his par- 
tiality in favor of those who appointed him. That this 
will not be the case by the eflFeot of his motion, and 



OF THE FEDERAL CONVENTION. 117 

the executive will by this means be independent of 
the national legislature ; but the appointment by the 
State executives ought to be made by votes in propor- 
tion to their weight in the scale of the representation. 

Mr, Randolph opposes the motion. The power 
vested by it is dangerous ; confidence will be want- 
ing ; the large States will be masters of the election ; 
an executive ought to have great experience, integrity, 
and activity. The executives of the States cannot 
know the persons properly qualified as possessing 
these. An executive thus appointed will court the 
oflScers of his appointment, -and will relax him in thq. 
duties of commander of the militia. Your single exe- 
cutive is already- invested with negativing laws of the 
State. Will he duly exercise the power? Is there no 
danger in the combinations of States to .appoint such 
an executive as may be too favorable to local State 
governments ? Add to this the expense and difiiculty 
of bringing the executives to one place to exercise 
their powers. Can you suppose they will ever cordi- 
ally raise the great oak, when they must sit as shrubs 
under its shade ? , 

Carried against the motion, ten noes, and Delaware 
divided. 

On ftiotion of Mr, Patters(m^ the consideration of 
the 2d resolve was taken up, which is as follows: 
" Resolved, therefore, that the rights of sufirage in the 
national legisfeiture ought to be apportioned to the 
quotas of contribution, or to the number of inhabit- 
ants, as the one or other rule may 'seem best in differ- 
ent cases.'' 

Judge Brearley. The present question is an im- 
portant one. On the principle that each State in the 
Union was sovereign, Congress, in the articles of con- 



118 SECRET PROCEEDINGS 

federation, determined that each State in the public 
councils had one vote. If the States still remain sov- 
ereign, the form of the present resolve is founded on 
principles of injustice. He then stated the compara- 
tive weight of each State ; the number of votes ninety. 
Georgia would be one, Virginia sixteen, and so of the 
rest. This vote must defeat itself, or end in despotism. 
If we must have a national government,, what is the 
remedy ? Lay the map of the confederation on the 
table, and extinguish the present boundary hnes of 
the respective State jurisdictions, and make a new 
division, so that each State is equal, then a govern- 
ment on the present system will be just. 

Mr, Patterson opposed the resolve. Let us con- 
sider, with what powers are we sent here ? (Moved to 
have the credentials of Massachusetts read, which. was 
done.) By this and the other credisntials we see, that 
the basis of oui present authority is founded on a 
revision of the articles of the present confederation, 
and to alter or amend them in such parts where they 
may appear defective. Can we on this ground form a 
national government ? I fancy not. Our commissions 
give a complexion to the business ; and can we sup- 
pose, that, when we exceed the bounds of our duty, 
the people will approve our proceedings ? 

We are met here as the deputies of thirteen inde- 
pendent, sovereign States, for federal purposes. Can 
we consolidate their sovereignty and form one nation, 
and annihilate the sovereignties of our States, who 
have sent us here for other purposes ? 

What, pray, is intended by a proportional represen- 
tation ? Is property to be considered as part of it ? Is 
a man, for example, possessing a property of £ 4000 
to have forty votes to one possessing only £ 100 ? 



OF THE FEDERAL CONVENTION. 119 

This has been asserted on a former occasion. If State 
distinctions are still to be held up, shall I submit the 
welfare of the State of New Jersey, with five votes 
in the national council, opposed to Virginia who has 
sixteen votes ? Suppose, as it was in agitation before 
the war, that America had been represented in the 
British Parliament, and had sent two hundred mem- 
bers ; what would this number avail against six hun- 
dred ? We would have been as much enslaved in that 
case as when unrepresented ; and, what is worse, with- 
out the prospect of redress. But it is sedd, that this 
national government is to act on individuals and not 
on States ; and cannot a federal government be so 
framed as to operate in the same way ? It surely may. 
I thereforfe declare, that I will never consent to the 
present system, and I shall make all the interest 
against it in the State which I represent that I can. 
Myself or my State will never submit to tyranny or 
despotism. 

Upon the whole, every sovereign State according to 
a confederation must iiave an equal vote, or there is 
an end to liberty. As long, therefore, as State distinc- 
tions are held up, this rule must invariably apply; 
and if a consolidated national government must take 
place, then State distinctions must cease, or the States 
must be equalized. . 

Mr. Wilson was in favor of the resolve. He ob- 
served, that a majority, nay, even a minority of the 
States have a right to confederate with each other, 
and the rest may do as they please. He considered 
numbers as the best criterion to determine representa- 
tion. Every citizen of one State possesses the same 
rights with the citizen of another. Let us see how 
this rule will apply to the present question. Pennsyl- 



120 SECRET PROCEEDINGS 

vania, from its numbers, has a right to twelve votes, 
when, on the same principle, New Jersey is entitled to 
five votes. Shall New Jersey have the same right or 
influence in the councils of the nation with Pennsyl- 
vania ? I say no. It is unjust ; I never will confed- 
erate on this plan. The gentleman from New Jersey 
is candid in declaring his opinion ; I commend him 
for it ; I am equally so. I say again I never will con- 
federate on his principles. If' no State will part with 
any of its sovereignty, it is in vain to talk of a national 
government. The State lyho has five times the num- 
ber of inhabitants ought, nay, must have the same 
proportion of weight in the representation. If there 
was a probability of equalizing the States, he would 
be for it. But we have no such power. If, however, 
we depart from the principle of representation in pro- 
portion to numbers, we will lose the object of our 
meeting. 

The question postponed for farther consideration. 

Adjourned to to-morrow morning. 

MONDAY, JUNE 11th, 1787. 

Met pursuant to adjournment. Present, eleven 
States. 

Mr, Sherman moved, " That the first branch of the 
national legislature be chosen in, proportion to the 
number of the whole inhabitants in each State." He 
observed, that as the people ought to have the elec- 
tion of one of the branches of the legislature, the 
legislature of each State ought to have the election of 
the second branch, in order to preserve the State sov- 
ereignty ; and that each State ought in this branch to 
have one vote. 

Oovertior Rutledge moved, as an amendment of the 



OF THE FEDERAL CONVENTION. 121 

first proposition, " That the proportion of representation 
ought to be according to and in proportion to the con- 
tribution of each State." 

Mr, Butler supported the motion, by observing, that 
money is strength ; and every State ought to have 
its weight in the national council in proportion to the 
quantity it possesses. He further observed, that when 
a boy, he read this as one of the remarks of Julius 
CsBsar, who declared, if he had but money, he would 
find soldiers and every thing necessary to carry on a 
war. 

Mr, King observed, that it would be better first to 
establish a principle ; that is to say, whether we will 
depart from federal grounds in forming a national gov- 
ernment ; and therefore, to bring this point to view, 
he moved, as a previous question, that the sense of the 
committee be taken on the following question : 

" That the right of suffrage, in the first branch of 
the national legislature, ought not to be according to 
the rule in the articles of confederation, but according 
to some equitable ratio of representation." 

Governor FranklMs written remarks on this point 
were read by Mr. Wilgon. In these Governor Frank- 
lin observes, that representation ought to be iii propor- 
tion to the importance of numbers or wealth in each 
State ; that there can be no danger of undue influence 
of the greater against the lesser States. This* was the 
apprehension of Scotland, when the union with Eng- 
land was proposed, when in Parliament they were 
allowed only sixteen peers and forty-five commons ; 
yet experience has proved, that their liberties and in- 
fluence wer^.in no danger. 

The question on Mr. King's 'motion was carried in 
the affirmative ; tseven ayes, three noesj and Maryland 
11 



122 SECRET PROCEEDINGS 

. divided. New York, New Jersey, and Delaware in 
the negative. 

Mr. Dickinson moved, as an amendment, to add 
the words, '' according to the taxes and contributions 
of each State actually collected and paid into the nar 
tional treasury." 

Mr, Butler was of opinion, that the national gov- 
ernment will only have the right of making and col- 
lecting the taxes, but that the States individually must 
lay their own taxes. 

Mr, Wilson was of opinion, and therefore moved, 
" that the mode of representation of each of the States 
ought to be from the number of its free inhabitants, 
and of every other description three fifths to one free 
inhabitant." He supposed, that the impost will not 
be the only revenue ; the post-office, he supposes, will 
be another substantial source of revenue. He observed, 
further, that this mode had already received the appro- 
bation of eleven States, in their acquiescence to the 
quota made by Congress. He admitted, that this re- 
solve would require further restrictions; for, where 
numbers determined the representation, a census, at 
different periods of five, seven, or ten years, ought to 
be taken. 

Mr, Gerry, The idea of property ought not to be 
the rule of representation. Blacks are property, and 
are used at the southward as horses and cattle at the 
northward; and why should their representation be 
increased at the southward on account of the number 
of slaves, any more than horses and oxen at the north ? 

Mr, Madison was of opinion, at present, to fix the 
standard of representation, and let the detaiL be the 
business of a sub-committee. 

Mr. Rutledge's motion was postponed. 



^ 9 -■ ^ 



OF THE FEDERAL CONVENTION. 123 

Mr. Wilson's motion was then put, and carried by 
nine States against two. New York in the majority./ 

Mr, Wilson then moved, as an amendment to Mr. 
Sherman's motion, " that the same proportion be ob- 
served in the election of the second branch as the 
first." 

The question, however, was first put on Mr. Sher- 
man's motion, and lost. Six States against, and five 
for it. 

Then Mr. Wilson's motion was put and carried. 
Six ayes, five noes. 

The eleventh resolve was then taken into consider- 
ation. Mr, Madison moved to add after the word 
"junctions," the words "or separation." 

Mr, Read against the resolve in tofo. We must 
put away State governments, and we will then remove 
all cause of jealousy. The guarantee will confirm the 
assumed rights of several States to lands which do be- 
long to the confederation. 

Mr. Madison njoved an amendment, to add to or 
alter the resolution as follows : " The republican con- 
stitutions and the existing laws of each State to be 
guarantied. by the United States." 

Mr, Randolph was for the present amendment, be- 
cause a republican government must be the basis of 
our national union ; and no State in it ought to have 
it in its power. to change its government into a mon- 
archy. Agreed to. 

Thirteenth resolve, — the first part agreed to. 

Fourteenth resolve, — taken into consideration. 

Mr. Williamson, This resolve, will be unneces- 
sary, as the union will become the law of the land. 

Governor Randolph, He supposes it to be abso- 
lutely necessary. Not a Qtate government, but its 



124 SECRET PROCEEDINGS 

officers will infringe on the rights of the national gov- 
ernment. If the State judges are not sworn to the 
observance of the new government, will they not judi- 
cially determine in favor of their State laws? We 
are erecting a supreme, national government ; ought 
it not to be supported ? and can we give it- too many 
sinews ? 

Mr. Gerry rather supposes, that the national legis- 
lators ought to be sworn to preserve the State consti- 
tutions, as they will run the greatest risk to be annihi- 
lated, and therefore moved it. 

For Mr. Gerry's amendment, seven ayes, four noes. 

Main question then put on the clause or resolve. 
Six ayes, five noes. New York in the negative. 

Adjourned td to-morrow morning. 

• TUESDAY, JUNE 12th, 1787. 

Met pursuant to adjournment. Present, eleven 
States. 

The fifteenth or last resolve was taken into consid- 
eration. No debate arose on it, and the question was 
put and carried. Five States for it, three against, and 
two divided. New York in the negative. 

Having thus gone through with the resolves, it was 
found necessary to take up such parts of the preceding 
resolves as had been postponed or not agreed to. The 
remaining part of the fourth resolve was taken into 
consideration. 

Mr, Sherman moved, that the blank of the duration 
of the first branch of the national legislature, be filled 
with " one year," Mr. Rutledge with " two years," 
and Mr. Jenifer with "three years." 

Mr. Madison was for the last amendment ; observ- 
ing, that it will give it stability, and induce gentlemen 
of the first weight to engage in it. 



OF THE FEDERAL CONVENTION. 125 

Mr, Gerry is afraid the people will be alarmed, as 
savoring of despotism. , 

Mr, Madison. The people's opinions cannot be 
known, as to the particular modifications which may 
be necessary in the new government. In general, 
they believe there is something wrong in the present, 
system, that requires amendment ; and he could wish 
to make the republican system the basis of the change, 
because, if our amendments should fail of securing 
their happiness, they will despair it can be done in this 
way, and incline to monarchy. 

Mr, Gerry could not be governed by the prejudices 
of the people." Their good sense will ever have its 
wdght. Pertiaps a limited monarchy would be the 
best government, if we could organize it by creating 
a house of peers ; but that cannot, be done. 

The question was put on the three years' amend- 
ment, and carried. Seven ayes, four noes. New 
York in the aflSrmative. 

On motion to expunge the clause of the qualifica- 
tion as to age, it was carried. Ten States against 
one. 

On the question for fixed stipends, without aug- 
mentation or diminution, to this branch of the legisla- 
ture, it was moved, that the words " to be paid by the 
national treasury," be added. Carried. Eight States 
for, and three against. New York in the negative. 

The question was then put on the clause as amend*; ! 
ed, and carried. Eight ayes, three noes. New York 
in tlie negative. 

On the clause respecting the ineligibility to any 
other ofiice, it was moved, that the words " by any 
particular State," be expunged. Four States for, five 
against, and two divided. New Yprk afiirmative. 
11* 



f26' Secret proceedinq3 

The question was then put on the whole clause, 9nd 
carried. Ten ayes, one no. 

The last blank was filled up with "one year," and 
carried. Eight ayes, two noes, and one divided. 

Mr. Pinckney moved to expunge the clause. 
Agreed to, tiem, eon. 

The question to fill up the blank with "thirty 
years." Agreed tp. Seven States for, four against^ 

It was moved to fill the blank, as to the duration, 
with "seven- years." 

Mr. Pierce moved to hav«e it for three years. In- 
stanced the danger of too long a continuance, from the 
evils arising in the British parliaments from their sep- 
tennial duration, and the clsunors against it in that 
country, by its real friends. 

Mr. Shermar^ was against the seven years, because, 
if they are bad men, it is too long ; and if good, they 
may be again elected. 

Mr. Madison was for seven years. Considers this 
branch as a check on the democracy. It cannot, 
therefore, be made too strong. 

For the motion, eight ayes ; one no ; two States 
divided. New York one of the last. 

Mr. Butler moved to expunge the clause of the sti- 
pends. Lost. Seven against, three for, one divided. 

Agreed, that the second branch of the national legis- 
lature be paid in the same way as the first branch. 

Upon the subject of ineligibility, it was agreed, that 
the same rule should apply as to the first branch. 

Sixth resolve agreed to be postponed, sine die. 

Ninth resolve taken into consideration, but post- 
poned to to-morrow. 

Adjourned to to-morrow morning. 



OF THE FEDERAL CONVENflON. 127 



WEDNESDAY, JUNE 13th, 1787. 

Met pursuant to adjournment. Present, eleven 
States. 

Governor ii^amfo^A^: observed the difficulty in es- 
tablishing the powers^ of the judickry ; the object, 
however, at present, is, to establish this principle, to 
wit, the security of foreigners where treaties are in 
their favor, and to preserve the harmony of States, and 
that of the citizens thereof. This being once estab- 
lished, it will be the business of a sub-committee to 
detail it ; and, therefore, moved to obliterate such parts 
of the resolve so ^ only to establish the principle, to 
wit, "that the jurisdiction of the national judiciary 
shall extend to all cases of national revenue, impeach- 
ment of national officers, and. questions which involve 
the^ national peace or harmony. Agreed to, unani- 
mously. 

It was further agreed, that the judiciary be paid out 
of the national treasury. 

Mr, Pinckneij moved, that the judiciary be appoint- 
ed by the national legislature. 

Mr. Madison is of opinion, that the second branch 
of the legislature ought to appoint the judiciary, which 
the convention agreed to. 

Mr. Gerry moved, that the first branch shall have 
the only right of originating bills to supply the 
treasury. .. 

Mr. Butler against the motion. We are constantly 
running away with the idea of the excellence of the 
British Parliament, and with or without reason copy- 
ing from them ; when, in fact, there is no similitude 
in our situations.. With us, both Houses are appointed 
by the people, and both ought to be equally trusted. 



128 SECRET PROCEEDINGS 

Mr, Gerry. If we dislike the British government 
for the oppressive measures by them carried on against 
us, yet he hoped we would not be so far prejudiced as 
to make ours in every thing opposite to theirs. 

Mr. Madison's question carried. 

The committee having now gone through the whole 
of the propositions from Virginia, — Resolved, That 
the committee do report to the convention their pro- 
ceedings. This was accordingly done. [See a copy 
of it hereunto annexed.] 

The House resolved, on the report being read, that 
the consideration thereof be postponed to to-morrow, 
and that members have leave to take copies thereof. • 

Adjourned to to-morrow morning. 

THURSDAY, JUNU 14th, 1787. 

Met pursuant to adjournment. Present, eleven 
States. 

. Mr. Patterson moved, that the further considera- 
tion of the report be postponed until to-morrow, as he 
intended to give in principles to form a federal system 
of government, n;iateriaUy different from the system 
now under consideration. Postponement agreed to. 

Adjourned until to-morrow morning. 

FRIDAY, JUNE 15th, 1787. 

Met pursuant to adjournment. Present, eleven 
States. 

Mr. Patterson, pursuant to his intentions as men- 
tioned yesterday, read a set of resolves, as the basis of 
amendment to the confederation. [See those resolves 
annexed.] 

He observed, that no government could be energetic 
on paper only, which was no more than straw ; that 



>r 



OF THE FEDERAL CONVENTION. 129 

the remark applied to the one as veil as to the other 
system ; and is therefore of opinion, that there must 
be a small standing force, to give every government 
weight. 

Mr. Madison moved for the report of the commit- 
tee, and the question may then come on whether the 
convention will postpone it) in order to take into con- 
sideration the system now offered. 

Mr. Lansing is of opinion, that the two systems 
are fairly contrasted. The one now offered, is on the 
basis of amending the federal government, and the 
other to be reported as a national government, on pro- 
positions which exclude the propriety of amendment. 
Considering, therefore, its importance, and that justice 
may be done to its weighty consideration, he is for 
postponing it a day. 

Colonel Hamilton cannot say he is in sentiment 
with either plan ; supposes both might again be con- 
adered as federal plans, and by this means they will 
be fairly in committee, and he contrasted so as to make 
a comparative estimate of the two. 

Thereupon it was agreed, that the report be post- 
poned, and that the House will resolve itself into a 
committee of the whole, to take into consideration 
both propositions to-morrow. 

Adjourned to to-morrow morning. 

SATURDAY, JUNE 16th, 1787. 

Met pursuant to adjournment. Present, eleven 
States. 

Mr, Lansing moved to have the first article of the 
last plan of government read ; which being done, he 
observed, that this system is fairly contrasted with the 
one ready to be reported, — the one federal, and the 



130 $£CBET PROCEEDINGS 

Other national. In the first, the powes^ are exercised as 
flowing from the respective State governments. The 
second, deriving its authority from the pe(iple of the 
respective States ,• which latter must ultirjiately de- 
stroy or annihilate the State govermxusipts. To deter- 
mine the powers on these grand olijects^'with which 
we are invested, let us recur to the credentials of the 
respective States, and see what the views were of 
those who sent us. The language is there expressive ; 
it is, upon the revision of the present confederation, to 
alter and simend such parts as may appear defective, so 
as to give additional strength to the Union. And he 
would venture to assert, that, had the legislature of 
the State of New York apprehended, that Iheir powers 
would have been construed to extend to the formation 
of a national government, to the extinguishment of 
their independency, no delegates would have here 
appeared on the part of that State. This sentiment 
must have had its weight on a former occasion, even 
in this House ; for when the second resolution of Vir- 
ginia, which declared, in substance, that a federal gov- 
ernment could not be amended for the good of the 
whole, the remark of an honorable member of South 
Carolina, that, by determining this question in the 
aflSrmative, their deliberative powers were at an end, 
induced this House to waive the resolution. It is in 
vain to adopt a mode of government, which we have 
reason to believe the people gave us no power to re- 
commend ; as they will consider themselves, on this 
ground, authorized to reject it. See the danger of 
exceeding your powers, by the example which the 
requisition of Congress of 1783 afforded. They re- 
quired ar^ impost on all imported articles ; to which) 
on federal grounds, they had no right, unless volunta- 



OF THE FEDERAL CONVENTION. 131 

rily granted. What was the consequence? Some, 
who had least to give^ granted it ; and others, under 
various restrictions and modifications, so that it could 
not be systematized. If we form a government, let us 
do it On principles which are likely to meet the appro- 
bation of the States. Great changes can only be 
gradually introduced. The States will never sacrifice 
their essential rights to a national government. New 
plans, annihilating the rights of States, (unless upon 
evident necessity,) can never be approved. I may 
venture to assert, that the prevalent opinion of America 
is, that granting additional po-wers to Congress would 
answer their views j and every power recommended 
for their approbation, exceeding this idea, will be 
fruitless. 

Mr, Patterson, As I had the honor of proposing a 
new system of government for the Union, it will be 
expected that I should explain i-ts principles. 

1st. The plan accords with our own powers. 

2d. It* accords with the sentiments of the people. 

But if the subsisting confederation is so radically 
defective as not to admit of amendment, let us say so, 
and report its insuflSiciency, and wait for enlarged 
powers. We must, in the present case, pursue our 
powers, if we expect the approbation of the people. I 
am not here to pursue my own sentiments of govern- 
ment, but of those who have sent me ; and I believe, 
that a little practical virtue is to be preferred to the 
finest theoretical principles, which cannot be carried 
into efiect. Can we, as representatives of kidependent 
States, annihilate the essential powers of indepen- 
dency ? Are not the votes of this convention taken 
on every question under the idea of independency ? 
Let us turn to the fifth article of confederation. In 



132 SECRET PROCEEDINGS 

this it is mutually i^reed, that each State should have 
one vote. It is a fundamental principle arising from 
confederated governments. The thirteenth article 
provides for amendments ; but they must be agreed to 
by every State ; the dissent of one renders every pro- 
posal null. The confederation is in the nature of a 
compact ; and can any State, unless by the consent 
of the whole, either inpohtics or law, withdraw their 
powers? Let it be said by I^nnsylvania and the 
other large States, that they, for the sake of peace, 
assented to the confederation ; can she now resume 
her original right without the consent of the donee ? 

And although it is now asserted, that the larger 
States reluctantly agreed to that part of tlie confedera- 
tion which secures an equal suflfrage to each, yet let it 
be remembered, that the smaller States were the last 
who approved the confederation. 

On this ground, representation must be drawn from 
the States, to maintain their independency, and not 
from the people composing those States. 

The doctrine advanced by a learned gentleman from 
Pennsylvania, that all power is derived from the peo- 
ple, and that in proportion to their numbers they ought 
to participate equally in the benefits and rights of gov- 
ernment, is right in principle, but, unfortunately for 
him, wrong in the apphcation to the que3tion now in 
debate. 

When independent societies confederate for mutual 
defence, they do so in their collective capacity; and 
then each State, for those purposes, must be considered 
as one of the contracting parties. Destroy this balance 
of equality, and you endanger the rights of the lesser 
societies by the danger of usurpation in the greater. 

Let U3 test the government intended to be made by 



OF THE F^pERAL CONVENTION. 133 

the Yirginia plan, on these principles. The represent- 
atives in the national legislature are to be in proportion 
to the niunber of inhabitants in each State. So far it 
is right, upon the principles of equality, when State 
distinctions are done away ; but those, to certain pur- 
poses, still exist. Will the government of Pennsylva- 
nia admit a participation of their common stock of land 
to the citizens of New Jersey ? I fancy not. It there- 
fore follows, that a national government, upon the 
present plan, is unjust, and destructive of the common 
principles of reciprocity* Much has been said, that 
this government is to operate on persons^ not oh States. 
This, upon examination will^ be found eqijally falla- 
cious ,• for the fact is, it. will, in the quotas of revenue, 
be proportioned, among the States, as States ; and in 
this business, Georgia will have one vote, and Virginia 
sixteen. The truth is, both plans may be considered 
to compel individuals to a compliance with their requi- 
sitions, although the requisition is made on the States. 

Much has been said in commendation of two branch- 
es in a legislature, €uid of the advantages resulting from 
their being checks to each other. This may be true 
when applied to State governments, but will not 
equally apply to a national legislature whose legisla- 
tive objects are few and simple. 

Whatever may be said of Congress, or their conduct 
on particular occasions, the people in general, are 
pleased with such a body, and, in general, wish an in- 
crease of their powers, for the good government of the 
Union. Let us now see the plein of the national gov- 
ernment on the score of expense. The least the sec- 
ond branch of the legislature can consist of, is ninety 
members; the first branch, of at least two hundred 
and seventy. How are they to be paid, in our present 
12 



^. 



^^••:a 



•%. 



134 SECRET PROCEEDINGS 

impoverished situation ? Let us, therefore, fairly try 
whether the confederation cannot be mended; and, if 
it call, we shall do our duty, and, I believe, the people 
will be satisfied. 

Mr, Wilson first stated the diflference between the 
two plans. 

Virginia plan proposes two branches in the legisla- 
ture. 

Jersey, a single legislative 'body. 

Virginia, the legislative powers derived from the 
people. 

Jersey, from the States. 

Virginia, a single executive. 

Jersey, more than one. 

Virginia, a majority of the legislature can act. 

Jersey, a small minority can control. 

Virginia, the legislature can legislate on all national 
concerns. 

Jersey, only on limited objects. 

Virginia, legislature to negative all State laws. 

Jersey, giving power to the executive to compel 
obedience by force. 

Virginia, to remove the executive by impeachment. 

Jersey, on application of a majority of the States. 

Virginia, for the establishment of inferior judiciary 
tribunals. 

Jersey, no provision. 

It is said, and insisted on, that the Jersey plan ac- 
cords with our powers. As for* himself, he considers 
his powers to extend to every thing or nothing ; and 
therefore, that he has a right, and is at liberty to agree 
to either plan or none. The people expect relief from 
their present embarrassed situation, and look up for it 
to this national convention ,• and it follows, that they 



e 



S 



OF THE FEDERAL CONVENTION. 136 

expect a national government, and therefore the plan 
from Virginia has the preference to the other. I 
would, said he, with a reluctant hand, add any powers 
to Congress, because they are not a body chosen by 
the people, and consist only of one branch, and each 
State in it has one vote. Inequality in rfepresentation 
poisons every government. The English courts are 
hitherto pure, just, and incorrupt, while their legisla- 
ture are base and venal. The one arises from unjust 
representation ; the other, from their independency of 
the legislature. Lord Chesterfield remarks, that one 
of the States of the United Netherlands withheld its 
assent to a proposition, until a major of their State was 
provided for. He needed not to have added, (for the 
conclusion was self-evident,) that it was one of the 
lesser States. I mean no reflection, but I leave it to 
gentlemen to consider, whether this has not also been 
the case in Congress ? The argument in favor of the 
Jersey plan goes too far, as it cannot be completed un- 
less Rhode Island assents. A single legislature is very 
dangerous. Despotism may present itself in various 
shapes. May there not be legislative despotism, if, in 
the exercise of their power, they are unchecked and 
unrestrained by another branch ? On the contrary, an 
executive, to be restrained, must be an individual. 
The first triumvirate of Rome, combined without law, 
was fatal to its liberties ; and the second, by the usur- 
pation of Augustus, ended in despotism. The two 
kings of Sparta, and the consuls of Rome, by sharing 
the executive, distracted their governments. 

Mr. C, C. Plnckney supposes, that, if New Jersey 
was indulged with one vote out of thirteen, she would 
have no objection to a national government. He sup- 
poses, that the convention have already determined, 



136 SECRET PROCEEDINGS 

virtually, tbat the federal government cannot be made 
efficient. A national government being, therefore, the 
object, this plan must be pursued ; as our business is 
not to conclude, but to recommend. 

Judge Ellsworth is of opinion, that the first ques- 
tion on the new plan will decide nothing materially 
ou principle, and therefore moved the postponement 
thereof, in order to bring on the second. 

Governor Randolph. The question now is, which 
of the two plans is to be preferred. . If the vote on the 
first resolve will determine it, and it is so generally 
understood, he has no objection that it be put. The 
resolutions from Virginia must have been adopted on 
the supposition that a federal government was impracti- 
cable. And it is said, that power i^ wanting to institute 
such a government. But when our all is at stake, I 
will consent to any mode that will preserve us. View 
our present deplorable situation ; France, to whom we 
are indebted in every motive of gratitude and honor, 
is left unpaid the large sums she has supplied us with 
in the day of ouf necessity. Our officers and soldiers, 
who have successfully fought our battles, and the 
loaners of money to the public, look up to you for re- 
lief. The bravery of our' troops is degraded by the 
weakness of our government. 

It has been contended^ that the fifth article of the 
confederation cannot be repealed under the powers to 
new modify the confederation by the thirteenth article. 
This surely is false reasoning, since the whole of the 
confederation, upon revision, is subject to amendment 
and alteration ; besides, our business consists in recom- 
mending a system of government, not to make it. 
There are great seasons, when persons with limited 
powers are justified in exceeding them, and a person 



1 



\ '^ 



OF THE FEDERAL CONVENTION. 137 

would be contemptible not to risk it. Originally, our 
confederation was founded on the weakness of each 
State to repel a foreign enemy; and we have found, 
that the powers granted to Congress are insuflSicient. 
The body of Congress is ineffectual to carry the great 
objects of safety and protection into execution. What 
would their powers be over the commander of the mil- 
itary, but for the virtue of the commander ? As the 
State assemblies are constantly encroaching on the 
powers of Congress, the Jersey plan would rather en- 
courage such encroachment than be a check to it ; 
and, from the nature of the institution, Congress would 
ever be governed by cabal and intrigue. They are, 
besides, too numerous for an executive.; nor can any 
additional powers be sufficient to enable them to pro- 
tect us against foreign invasion. • Amongst other 
things. Congress was intended to be a body to pre- 
serve peace among the States ; and, in the rebellion of 
Massachusetts, it was found they were not authorized 
to use the troops of the confederation to quell it. 
Every one is -impressed with Ihe idea of a general 
regulation of trade and commerce. Can Congress do 
this, when, from the nature of their institution, they 
are so subject to cabal and intrigue ? And would it 
not be dangerous to intrust such a body with the 
power, when they are dreaded on these grounds ? I 
am certain, that a national government must be estab- 
lished, and this is the only moment when it can be 
done. And let me conclude by observing, that the 
best exercise of power is, to exert it for the public 
good. 

Adjourned to Monday morning. 

12* 



138 SECRET PROCEEDINGS , 

MONDAY, JUNE 19th, 1787. 

Met pursuant to adjournment. Present, eleven 
States. 

Mr, Hamilton. To deliver my sentiments on so 
important a subject, Vhen the first characters in the 
Union have gone before me, inspires me with the- 
greatest diffidence, especially when my own ideas are 
so materially dissimilar to the plans now before the 
committee. My situation is disagreeable, but it would 
be criminal not to come forward on a question of such 
magnitude. I have well considered the subject, and 
am convinced, that no amendment of the confedera- 
tion can answer the purpose of a gpod government, 
so long as State sovereignties do, in any shape, exist.; 
and I have great doubts whether a national govern- 
ment, on the Virginia plan,, can be made effectual. 
What is federal ? An association of several indepen- 
dent states into one. How or in what manner this 
association is formed, is not so clearly distinguishable. 
We find the diet of Germany has, in some instances, 
the power of legislation on individuals. We find the 
United States of America have it, in an extensive de- 
gree, in the cases of piracies. 

Let us now review the powers with which we are 
invested. We are appointed for the sole and express 
purpose of revising the confederation, and to alter or 
amend it, so as to render it effectual for the purposes 
of a good government. Those who suppose it must 
be federal, lay great stress on the terms sole and epc- 
press, as if these words intended a confinement to ^ 
federal government ; when . the manifest import is no 
more, than that the institution of a good government 
must be the sole and express object of your delibera- 



OF THE FEDERAL CONVENTION. 139 

tions. Nor can we suppose an annihilation of our 
powers by forming a national government, as many 
of the States have made, in their constitutions, no pro- 
vision for any alteration ; and thus much I can say 
for the State I have the honor to represent, that, when 
our credentials were under consideration in the Senate, 
some members were for inserting a restriction in the 
powers, to prevent an encroachment on the constitu- 
tion. It was answered by others ; and thereupon the 
resolve carried on the credentials, that it might abridge 
some of the constitutional powers of the State, and 
that, possibly, in the formation of a new Union, it 
would be found necessary- This appears reasonable, 
and therefore leaves us at liberty to form such a na- 
tional government as we think best adapted for the 
good of the whole. I have, therefore, no difficulty as 
to the extent of our powers, nor do I feel myself re- 
strained in the exercise of my judgment under them. 
We can only propose and recommend ; the power of 
ratifying or rejecting is still in the States. Button 
this great question I am still greatly embarrassed. JE 
have before observed my apprehension of the ineffi- 
cacy of either plan ; and I have great doubts, whether 
a more energetic government can pervade this wide 
and extensive country. I shall now show, that both 
plans are materially defective. 

1. A good government ought to be constant, and 
ought to contain an active principle. 

2. Utility and necessity. 

3. An habitual sense of obligation! . 

4. Force. 

6. Influence. 

I hold it, that different societies have all different 
views and interests to pursue, and always prefer local 



140 SECRET PROCEEDINGS 

to general concerns. For example : New York legis- 
lature made an external compliance lately to a requi- 
sition of Congress ; but do they not, at the same time, 
counteract their compliance by gratifying the local ob- 
jects of the Sfate, so as to defeat their concession ? And 
this will ever be the case. Men always love power, and 
States will prefer their particular concerns to the gen- 
eral welfare ; and as the States become large and im- 
portant, will they not be less attentive to the general 
government ? What, in process of time, will Virginia 
be ? She contains now half a million of inhabitsmts ; 
in twenty-five years she will double the number 
Peeling her own weight and importance, must she 
not become indifferent to the concerns of the Union ? 
And where, in such a situation, will be found national 
attachment to the general government ? 

By " force," I mean the coercion of law and the coer- 
cion of arms. Will this^ remark apply to the power in- 
tended to be vested in the government to be instituted 
by either plan ? A delinquent must be compelled to 
obedience by force of arms. How is this to be done ? 
If you are unsuccessful, a dissolution of your govern- 
ment must be the consequence ; and in that case the 
individual legislatures will reassume their powers ; 
nay, will not the interest of the States be thrown into 
the State governments ? 

By influence, I mean the regular weight and sup- 
port it will receive from those who will find it their 
interest to support a government intended to preserve 
the peace and happiness of the community of the 
whole. The State governments, by either plan, will 
exert the means to counteract it. Th«y have their 
State judges and militia all combined to support their 
State interests ; and these will be influenced to oppose 



OF THE FEDERAL CONVENTION. 141 

a national government. Either plan is therefore pre- 
carious. The national government cannot long exist 
when opposed by such a weighty rival. The experi- 
ence of ancient and modern confederacies evince this 
point, and throw considerable light on the subject. 
The amphictyonic council of Greece had a right to 
require of its members troops, money, and the force of 
the country. Were they obeyed in the exercise of 
those powers ? Could they preserve the peace of the 
greater states and republics? Or where were they 
obeyed ? History shows that their decrees were dis- 
regarded, and that the stronger states, regardless of 
their power, gave law to the lesser. 

Let us examine the federal institution of G^miany. 
It was instituted upon the laudable principle of secur- 
ing the independency of the several States of which 
it was composed, and to protect them against foreign 
invasion; Has it answered these good intentions? 
Do we not see, that their councils are weak and dis- 
tracted, and that it cannot prevent the wars and con- 
fusions which the respective electors carry on against 
each other? The Swiss cantons, or the Helvetic 
union, are equally inefficient. 

Such are the lessons which the experience of others 
afford us, and from whence results the, evident con- 
clusion, that all federal governments are weak and 
distracted. To avoid the evils deducible from these 
observations, we must establish a general and national 
government, completely sovereign, and annihilate the 
State distinctions and State operations ; and, unless 
we do this, no good purpose can be answered. What 
does the Jersey plan propose ? It surely has not this 
for its object. By this we grant the regulation of trade 
and a more effectual collection of the revenue, and 



142 SECRET PROCEEDINGS 

some partial duties. These, at five or ten per cent., 
would only perhaps amount to a fund to discharge 
the debt of the corporation. 

Let us take a review of the variety of important 
objects, which must necessarily engage the attention 
of a national government. You have to protect your 
rights against -Canada on the north, Spain on the 
south, and your western frontier against the savages. 
You have to adopt necessary plans for the settlement 
of your frontiers, and to institute the mode in which 
settlements and good government are to be made. 

How is the expense of supporting and regulating 
these important matters to be defrayed ? By requisi- 
tion on the States, according to the Jersey plan ? Will 
this do it ? We have already found it ineffectual ? 
Let one State prove delinquent, and it will encourage 
others to follow the example ; and thus the whole will 
fail. And what is the standard to quota among the 
States their respective proportions ? Can lands be the 
standard ? How would that apply between Russia 
and Holland ? Compare Pennsylvania with North 
Carolina, or Connecticut with New York. Does not 
commerce or industry in the one or other make a 
great disparity between these different countries, and 
may not the comparative value of the States from 
these circumstances, make an unequal disproportion 
when the data is numbers ? I therefore conclude, that 
either system would ultimately destroy the confedera- 
tion, or any other government which is established on 
- such fallacious principles. Perhaps imposts, taxes on 
specific articles, would produce a more equal system 
of drawing a revenue. 

Another objection against the Jersey plan is, the 
unequal representation. • Can the great States consent 



OF THE FEDERAL CONVENTION. 143 

to this ? If they did, it would eventually work its 
own destruction. How are forces to be raised by the 
Jersey plan ? By quotas ? Will the States comply 
with the requisition ? As much as they will with the 
taxes. 

Examine the present confederation, and it is evi- 
dent, they can raise no troops, nor equip vessels, before 
war is actually declared; .They cannot, therefore, 
take any preparatory measure before an enemy is at 
your door. How unwise and inadequate their pow- 
ers ! And this must ever be the case when you at- 
tempt to define powers. Something will always be 
wanting. Congress, by being annually elected, and 
subject to recall, will ever come with the prejudices 
of their States rather than the good of the Union. 
Add, therefore, additional powers to a body thus or- 
ganized, and you establish a sovereignty of the worst 
kind, consisting of a single body. Where are the 
checks ? None. They must either prevail over the 
State governments, or the prevalence of the State gov- 
ernments must end in their dissolution. This is a 
conclusive obj.ection to the Jersey plan. 

Such are the insuperable objections to both plans ; 
and what is to be done on this occasion ? I confess, I 
am at a loss. I foresee the difficulty, on a consolidat- 
ed plan, of drawing a representation from so extensive 
a continent to one place. What can be the induce- 
ments for gentlemen to come six hundred miles to a 
national legislature ? The expense would at least 
amount to £100,000. This, however, can be no con- 
clusive objection, if it eventuates in an extinction of 
State governments. The burden of the latter would 
be saved, and the expense then would not be great. 
State distinctions would be found unnecessary ; and 



^f* 



144 SECRET PROCEEDINGS 

yet, I confess, to carry government to the extremities, 
the State governments, reduced to corporations, and 
with very limited powers, might be necessary, and the 
expense of the national government become less bur- 
densome. 

Yet, I confess, I see great difficulty of drawing 
forth a good representation. What, for example, will 
be the inducements for gentlemen of fortune and abil- 
ities to leave their houses and business to attend an- 
nually and long ? It cannot be the wages j for these, 
I presume, must be small. Will not the power, there- 
fore, be thrown into the hands of the demagogue or 
middling politician, who, for the sake of a small sti- 
pend and the hopes of advancement, will offer himself 
as a candidate, and the real men of weight and influ- 
ence, by remaining at home, add strength to the State 
governments ? I am at a loss to know what must be 
done J I despair, that a republican form of government 
can remove the difficulties. Whatever may be my 
opinion, I would hold it, however, unwise to change 
that form of government. I believe the British gov- 
ernment forms the best model the world ever produc- 
ed, and such has been its progress in the minds of the 
many, that this truth gradually gains ground. This 
government has for its object public strength and in- 
dividual security. It is said with us to be unattain- 
able. If it was once formed it would maintain itself. 
All communities divide themselves into the few and 
the many. The first are the rich and well born, the 
other the mass of the people. The voice of the peo- 
ple has been said to be the voice of God ; and, how- 
ever generally this maxim has been quoted and believ- 
ed, it is not true in fact. The people are turbulent 
and changing ; they seldom judge or determine right. 



OF THE FEDERAL CONVENTION. 146 

Give, therefore, to the first class a distinct, permanent 
share in the government. They will check the un- 
steadiness of the second, and, as they cannot receive 
any advantage by a change, they therefore will ever 
maintain good government. Can a democratic assem- 
bly, who annually revolve in the mass of the people, 
be supposed steadily to pursue the public good ? Noth- 
ing but a permanent body can check the imprudence 
of democracy. Their turbulent and uncontrolling dis- 
position requires checks. The Senate of New York, 
although chosen for four years, we have found to be 
ineflScient. Will, on the Virginia plan, a continuance 
of seven years do it ? It is admitted, that you cannot 
have a good executive upon a democratic plan. See 
the excellency of the British executive. He is placed 
above temptation. He can have no distinct interests 
from the public welfare. Nothing short of such an 
executive can be eflScient. The weak side of a re- 
publican government is the danger of foreign influ- 
ence. This is unavoidable, unless it is so constructed 
as to bring forward* its first characters in its support. 
I am, therefore, for a general government, yet would 
wish to go the full length of republican principles. 

Let one body of the legislature be constituted dur-^ 
iog good behaviour or life. 

Let one executive be appointed who dares execute 
his powers. 

It may be asked, is this a republican system ? It is 
strictly so,' as long as they remain elective. 

And let me observe, that an executive is less dan- 
gerous to the liberties of the people when in office 
during life, than for seven years. 

It may be said, this constitutes an elective monar- 
chy ? Pray, what is a monarchy ? May not the gov- 
13 



146 SECRET PROCEEDINGS 

* 

ernors of the respective States be considered in that 
light ? But, by making the executive subject to im- 
peachment, the term monarchy cannot apply. These 
elective monarchs have produced tumults in Rome, and 
are equally dangerous to peace in Poland; but this 
caanot apply to the mode in which I would propose 
the election. Let electors be appointed in each of the 
States to elect the executive, [Here Mr. H. produced 
his plan, a copy whereof is hereunto annexed,] to con- 
sist of two branqhes ; and I would give them the un- 
limited power of passing all laws, without exception. 
The Assembly to be elected for three years, by the 
people, in districts. The Senate to be elected by elect- 
ors, to be chosen for that pm-pose by the people, and 
to remain in office during life. The executive to 
have the power of negativing all laws ; to make war 
or peace, with the advice of the Senate ; to make trea- 
ties with their advice, but to have the sole direction 
of all military operations, and to send ambassadors, and 
appoint all military officers ; and to pardon all offend- 
ers, treason excepted, unless by advice of the Senate. 
On his death or removal, the President of the Senate 
to officiate, with the same powers, until another is 
elected. Supreme judicial officers to be appointed by 
the executive and the Senate. The legislature to 
appoint courts in each State, so as to make the State 
governments unnecessary to it. 

All State laws to be absolutely void, which contra- 
vene the general law;s. An officer to be appointed in 
each State, to have a negative on all State laws. All 
the militia, and the appointment of officers, to be un- 
der the national government. 

I confess, that this plan, and that from Virginia, are 
very remote from the idea of the people. Perhaps the 



OF THE FEDERAL CONVENTION. 147 

Jersey plan is nearest their expectation. But the peo-' 
pie are gradually ripening in their opinions of govern- 
ment ; they begin to be tired of an excess of democ- 
racy ; and what even is the Virginia plan, but " pork 
still, with a little change of the sauce." 
Adjourned to to-morrow. 

TUESDAY, JUNE 19th, 1787. 

Met pursuant to adjournment. Present, eleven 
States. 

On the consideration of the first resolve of the Jer- 
sey plan. 

Mr. Madison, This is an imjKJrtant question. 
Many persons scruple the powers of the convention. 
If this remark has any weight, it is equally applicable 
to the adoption of either plan. The difference of 
drawing the powers, in the one from the people, and 
in the other from the States, does not affect the pow- 
ers. There are two States in the Union, where the 
members of Congress are chosen by the people. A 
new government must be made. Our all is depending 
on it ; and if we have but a clause that the people will 
adopt, there is then a chance for our preservation. 
Although all the States have assented to the confed- 
eration, an infraction of any one article by one of the 
States, is a dissolution of the whole. This is the doc- 
trine of the civil law on treaties. 

Jersey pointedly refused complying with a requisi- 
tion of Congress, and was guilty of this infraction, 
although she afterwards rescinded her non-complying 
resolve. What is the object of a confederation ? It 
is twofold; first, to maintain the Union; secondly, 
good government. Will the Jersey plan secure these 
points ? No J it is still in the power of the confeder- 



148 SECRET PROCEEDINGS 

ated States to violate treaties. Has not Georgia, in 
direct violation of the confederation, made war with 
the Indians, and concluded treaties ? Have not Vir- 
ginia and Maryland entered into a partial compact? 
Have not Pennsylvania and Jersey regulated the 
bounds of the Delaware ? Has not the State of Massa- 
chusetts, at this time, a considerable body of troops in 
pay ? Has not Congress been obliged to pass a con- 
ciliatory act, in support of a decision of their federal 
court, between Connecticut and Pennsylvania, instead 
of having the power of carrying into effect the judg- 
ment of its own court? Nor does the Jersey plan 
provide for a ratification, by the respective States, of 
the powers intended to be vested. It is also defective 
in the establishment of the judiciary, granting only an 
- appellate jurisdiction, without providing for a second 
trial J and in case the executive of a State should par- 
don an offender, how will it effect the definitive judg- 
ment on appeal? It is evident, if we do not radically 
depart from a federal plan, we shall share the fate of 
ancient and modern confederacies. The amphictyonic 
council, like the American Congress, had the power 
of judging in the last resort in war and peace, calling 
out forces, and sending ambassadors. What was its 
fate or continuance ? Philip of Macedon, with little 
difficulty, destroyed every appearance of it. The 
Athenian had nearly the same fate. The Helvetic 
confederacy is rather a league. In the German con- 
federacy, the parts are too strong for the whole. The 
Dutch are in a most wretched situation ; weak in all 
its parts, and only supported by surrounding contend- 
ing powers. .;■-. 

The rights of individuals are infringed by many of 
the State laws ; such as issuing paper nioney, and in- 



OF THE FEDERAL CONVENTION. 149 

stituting a mode to discharge debts, differing from the 
form of the contract. Has the Jersey plan any checks 
to prevent the mischief? Does it, in any instance, 
secure internal tranquillity ? Right and force, in a 
system like this, are synonymous terms. When force 
is employed to support the system, and men obtain 
military habits, is there no danger they may turn their 
arms against their employers ? Will the Jersey plan 
prevent foreign influence ? Did not Persia and Mace- 
don distract the councils of Greece by acts of corrup- 
tion ? And are not Jersey and Holland, at this day, 
subject to the same distractions ? Will not the plan 
be burdensome to the smaller States, if they have an 
equal representation? But how is military coercion 
to enforce government? True, a smaller State may 
be brought to obedience, or crushed ; but what if one 
of the larger States should prove disobedient j are you 
sure you can by force effect a submission ? Suppose 
we cannot agree on any plan, what will be the condi- 
tion of the smaller States ? Will Delaware and Jersey 
be safe against Pennsylvania, or Rhode Island against 
Massachusetts ? And how will the smaller States be 
situated in case of partial confederacies? Will they 
not be obliged to make larger concessions to the 
greater States? The point of representation is the 
great point of difference, and which the greater States 
cannot give up ; and although there was an equaliza- 
tion of States, State distinctions would still exist. 
But this is totally impracticable ; and what would be 
the effect of the Jersey plan, if ten or twelve new 
States were added ? 

Mr. King moved, that the committee rise, and re- 
port, that the Jersey plan is not admissible, and report 
the first plan. 

13* . :: 



160 SECRET ^PROCEEDINGS 

Mr, Dickinson supposed, that there were good reg- 
ulations in both. Let us, therefore, conti:ast the one 
with the other, and consolidate such parts of them as 
the committee approve. 

Mr. King's motion was then put. Fof it, seven 
States ; three against it j one divided. Nev York in 
the minority. . 

The committee rose and reported again the first' 
plan, and the inadmissibility of the Jersey plan. 

The convention then proceeded to take the first 
plan into consideration. 

The first resolve was read. 

Mr, Wilson, I am, to borrow a sea phrase, for 
taking a new departure, and I wish to consider in what 
direction we sail, and what may- be the end of our 
voyage. I am for a national government, though the 
idea of federal is, in my view, the same. With me, it 
is not a desirable object to annihilate the State govern- 
ments, and here I differ from the honorable gentleman 
from New York. In all extensive empires, a subdi- 
vision of power is necessary. Persia, Turkey, and 
Rome, under its enaperors, are examples in point. 
These, although despots, found it necessary. A gen- 
eral government over a great exteiil of territory, must, 
in a few years, make subordinate jurisdictions. Alfred 
the Great, that wise legislator, made this gradation ; 
and the last division, on his plan, amounted only to 
ten territories. With this explanation, I shall be for 
the first resolve. 

Mr, Hamilton, I agree to the proposition. I did 
not intend, yesterday, a total extinguishment of State 
governments; but my meaning was, that a national 
government ought to be able to support itself without 
the aid or interference of the State governments, and 



OF THE FEDERAL CONVENTION. 161 

that therefore it was necessary to have full sovereignty. 
Even with corporate rights, the States will he danger- 
ous to the national government, and ought to be ex- 
tinguished, new modified, or reduced to a smaller 
scale. 

Mr, King, None of the States are now sovereign 
•or independent. Many of these essential rights are 
vested in Congress. Congress, l^y the confederation, 
possesses the rights of the United States. This is a 
union of the men of those States. None of the States, 
individually or collectively, but in Congress, have the 
rights of peace or war. The magistracy in Congress 
possesses the sovereignty. To certain- points we are 
now a united people. Consolidation is already estab- 
lished. The confederation contains an article to^mafeef 
alterations; Congress has the right to propose such 
alterations. The eighth article, respecting the quotas 
of the States, has been altered, and eleven States have 
agreed to it. Can it not be altered in other instances ? 
It can, excepting the guarantee of the States. 

Mr. Martin. When the States threw off their 
allegiance to Great Britain, they became independent 
of her and each other. They united and confederated 
for mutual defence ; and this was done on principles 
of perfect reciprocity. They will now again meet on 
the same ground. But when a d'.ssolution takes place, 
our original rights and sovereignties are resumed. Our 
accession to the Union has been by States. If any 
other principle is adopted by this convention, he will 
give it every opposition. 

Mr. Wilson. The declaration of independence 
preceded the State constitutions. What does this de- 
clare ? In the name of the people of these States, we 
are declared to be free and independent. The power 



152 SECRET PROCEEDINGS 

of war, peace, alliances, and trade, are declared to be 
vested in Congress. 

Mr, Hamilton. I agree to Mr. Wilson's remark. 
^ - Establish a weak government and you must at times 
overleap the bounds. Rome was obliged to create 
dictators. Cannot you make propositions to the peo- 
ple because we before confederated on other princi- 
ples? The people can yield to them, if they will. 
The three great objects of government, agriculture, 
commerce, and revenue, can only be secured by a 
general government. 

Adjourned to to-morrow morning. 

WEDNESDAY, JUNE 20th, 1787. 

Met. pursuant to adjournment. Present, eleven 
States. 

Judge Ellsworth, I propose, and therefore move, 
to expunge the word national^ in the first resolve, and 
to place in the room of it, government of the United 
States ; which was agreed to, nem. con. 

Mr, Lansing then moved, that the first resolve be 
postponed, in order to take into consideration the fol- 
lowing : " That the powers of legislation ought to be 
vested in the United States in Congress." 

I am clearly of opinion, that I am not authorized to 
accede to a system v/hich will annihilate the State 
governments, and the Virginia plan is declarative of 
such extinction. It has been asserted, that the public 
mind is not known. To some points it may be true, 
but we may collect from the fate of the requisition of 
the impost, what it may be on the principles of a na- 
tional government. When many of the States were 
so tenacious of their rights on this point, can we ex- 
pect that thirteen States will surrender their govern- 



OF THE FEDERAL CONVENTION. 153 

merits up to a national 'plan? Rhode Island pointedly 
refused granting it. Certainly she had a federal right 
so to do ; and I hold it as an undoubted truth, as long 
as State distinctions remain, let the national govern- 
ment be modified as you please, both branches of 
your legislature will be impressed with local and State 
attachments. The Virginia plan proposes a negative 
on the State laws, where, in the opinion of the na- 
tional legislature, they contravene the national gov- 
ernment ; and no State laws can pass unless approved 
by them. They will have more than a law in a day 
to revise ; and are they competent to judge of the 
wants and necessities of remote States ? 

This national government will, from their power, 
have great influence. in the State governments; and 
the existence of the latter are only saved in appear- 
ance. And has it not been asserted, that they expect 
their extinction ? If this be the object, let us say so, 
and extinguish them at once. But remember, if we 
devise a system of government which will not meet 
the approbation of our constituents, we are dissolving 
the Union ; but if we act within the limits of our 
power, it will be approved of; and should it upon 
experiment, prove defective, the people will intrust a 
future convention again to amend it. Fond as many 
are of a general government, do any of you believe it 
can pervade the whole continent so effectually as to 
secure the peace, harmony, and happiness of the 
whole ? The excellence of the British model of gov- 
ernment has been much insisted on : but we are en- 
deavouring to complicatCw it with State governments, 
on principles which will gradually destroy the one or 
the other. You are sowing the seeds of rivalship, 
which must at last end in ruin. 



164 SECRET PROCEEDINGS 

Mr. Mason, The material diflference between the 
two plans has already been clearly pointed out. The 
objection to that of Virginia arises from the want of 
power to institute it, and the want of practicability to 
carry it into* effect. Will the first objection apply to 
a power merely recommendatory ? In certain seasons 
of public danger it is commendable to exceed power. 
The treaty of peace, under which we now enjoy the 
blessings of freedom, was made by persons who ex- 
ceeded their powers. It met the approbation of the 
public, and thus deserved the praises of those who 
sent them. The impracticability of the plan is still 
more groundless. These measures are supported by 
one, who, at his time of life, has little to hope or ex- 
pect from any government. Let me ask, will the 
people intrust their dearest rights and liberties to the 
determination of one body of men, and those not cho- 
sen by them, and who are invested both with the 
sword and purse ? They never will ; they .never can ; 
to a conclave, transacting their business secret from 
the eye of the public. Do we not discover by their 
public journals of the years 1778, 1779, and 1780, 
that factions and party spirit had guided many of their 
acts ? The people of America, like all ottier people, 
are unsettled in their minds, and their principles fixed 
to no object, except that a republican government is 
the best, and that the legislature ought to consist of 
two branches. The constitutions of the respective 
States, made and approved of by them, evince this 
principle. Congress, however, from other causes, re- 
ceived a different organization. What, would you 
use military force to compel the observance of a social 
compact ? It is destructive to the rights of the people. 
Do you expect the militia will do it, or do you mean 



OF THE FEDERAL CONVENTION. 165 

a standing army ? The first will never, on such an 
occasion, exert any power ; and the latter may turn 
its arms against the government which employs them. 
I never will consent to destroy State governments, 
and will ever be as careful to preserve the one as the 
other. If we should, in the formation of the latter, 
have omitted some necessary regulation, I will trust 
my posterity to amend it. That the one government 
will be productive of disputes and jealousies against 
the other, I believe ; but it will produce mutual safe- 
ty. I shall close with observing, that, though some 
gentlemen have expressed much warmth on this and 
former occasions, I can excuse it, as the result of sud- 
den passion ; and hope, that, although we may differ 
in some particular points, if we mean the good of the 
whole, that our good sense, upon, reflection, will pre- 
vent us from spreading our discontent further. 

Mr, Martin. I know that government must be 
supported ; and, if the one was incompatible with the 
other, I would support the State government at the 
expense of the Union ; for I consider the present sys- 
tem as a system of slavery. Impressed with this idea, 
I made use, on a former occasion, of expressions per- 
haps rather harsh. If gentlemen conceive, that the 
.legislative branch is dangerous, divide them into two. 
They are as much the representatives of the States, 
as the State assembUes are the representatives of the 
people. Are not the powers which we here exercise 
given by the legislatures ? [After giving a detail of 
the Revolution and of State governments, Mr. Martin 
continued.] I confess, when the confederation was 
made. Congress ought to have been invested with 
more extensive powers ; but when the States saw that 
Congress indirectly aimed at sovereignty, they were 



166 SECRET PROCEEDINGS 

V 

jealous, and therefore refused any further concessions. 
The time is now come, that we can constitutionally 
grant them not only new powers, but to modify their 
government, so that the State governments are not 
endangered. But, whatever we have now in our 
power to grant, the grant is a State grant, and there- 
fore it must be so organized, that the State govern- 
ments are interested in supporting the Union. Thus 
systematized, there can be no danger if a small force 
is maintained. 

Mr, Sherman, We have found during the war, 
that, though Congress consisted of but one branch, it 
was that body which carried us through the whole 
war, and we were crowned with success. We closed 
the war, performing all the functions of a good gov- 
ernment, by making a benelScial peace. But the great 
difficulty now is, how we shall pay the public debt 
incurred during that war. The unwillingness of the 
States to comply tvith the requisitions of Congress, has 
embarrassed us greatly. But to amend these defects 
in government I am not fond of speculation. I would 
rather proceed on experimental ground. We can so 
modify the powers of Congress, that we will all be 
mutual supporters of one another. The disparity of 
the States can be no difficulty. We know this by 
experience. Virginia and Massachusetts were the first 
who unanimously ratified the old confederation. They 
then had no claim to more votes in Congress than one. 
Foreign states have made treaties with us as confed- 
erated States, not as a national government. Suppose 
we put an end to that government under which those 
treaties were made, will not these treaties be void ? 

Mr. Wilson, The question before us may jadmit 
of the three following considerations t 



•-■Jtr ■» 



OF THE FEDERAL CONVENTION. 167 

1. Whether the legislature shall consist of one or 
two branches. 

2. Whether they are to be elected by the State 
governments or by the people. 

3. Whether in proportion to State importance, or 
States individually. 

Confederations are usually of a short date. The 
amphictyonic council was instituted in the infancy of 
the Grecian republics ; as those grew in strength, the 
council lost its weight and power. The Achaean 
league met the same fate ;* Switzerland and Holland 
are supported in their confederation, not by its in- 
trinsic merit, but the incumbent pressure of surround- 
ing bodies. Germany is kept together by the house 
of Austria. True, Congress carried us through the 
war, even against its own weakness. That powers 
were wanting, you, Mr. President, must have felt. To 
other causes, not to Congress, must the success be as- 
cribed. That the great States acceded to the con- 
federation, and that they, in the hour of danger, made 
a sacrifice of their interest to the lesser States is true. 
Like the wisdom of Solomon in adjudging the child 
to its true mother, from tenderness to it, the greater 
States well knew, that the loss of a limb was fatal to 
the confederation ; thiey too, through tenderness, sac- 
rificed their dearest rights to preserve the whole. But 
the time is come, when justice will be done to their 
claims. Situations are altered. 

Congress have frequently made their appeal to 
the people. I wish they had always done it; the 
national government would have been sooner extri- 
cated. 

Question then put on Mr. Lansing's motion and 
14 



\ 



158 SECRET PROCEEDINGS 

lost. Six States against four; one divided. New 
York in the minority. 

Adjourned till to-morrow morning. 

THURSDAY, JUNE 21st, 1787. 

Met pursuant to adjournment. Present, eleven 
States. 

Dr, Johnson, It appears to me, that the Jersey 
plan has for its principal object the preservation of the 
State governments. So far, it is a departure from the 
plan of Virginia ; which, although it concentres in a 
distinct national government, is not totally indepen* 
dent of that of the States. A gentleman from New 
York, with boldness and decision, proposed a system 
totally different from both ; and though he has been 
praised by everybody, he has been supported by none. 
How can the State governments be secured on the 
Virginia plan? I oould have wished, that the sup- 
porters of the Jersey system could have satisfied them- 
selves with the principles of the Virginia plan, and 
that the individuality of the States could be supported. 
It is agreed on all hands, that a portion of government 
is to be left to the States. How can this be done ? 
It can be done by joining the States in their legislative 
capacity with the right of appointing the second 
branch of the national legislature, to represent the 
States individually. 

Mr, Wilson, If security is necessary to preserve 
the one, it is equally so to preserve the other. How 
can the national government be secured against the 
States ? Some regulation is necessary. Suppose the 
national government had a component number in the 
State legislature? But where the one government 
clashed with the other, the State government ought to 



OF THE FEDERAL CONVENTION. 159 

yield, as the preservation of the general interest must 
be preferred to a particular. But let us try to desig- 
nate the powers of each, and then no danger can he 
apprehended, nor can the general government be pos- 
sessed of any ambitious views to encroach on the , 
State rights. 

Mr, Madison. I could have wished, that the gen- 
tleman from Connecticut had more accurately marked 
his objections to the Virginia plan. I apprehend the 
greatest danger is from the encroachment of the States .. 
on the national government. This apprehension is 
justly founded on the experience of ancient confedera- 
cies, and our own is a proof of it. 

The right of negativing, in certain instances, the 
State laws, affords one security to the national gov- 
ernment. But is the danger well founded? Have 
any State governments ever encroached on the corpo- 
rate rights of cities ? And if it was the case, that the 
national government usurped the State government, 
if such usurpation was for the good of the whole, no 
mischief could arise. To draw the line between the • 
two, is a difficult task. I believe it cannot be done, 
and therefore I am inclined for a general government. 
If we cannot form a general government, and the 
States become totally independent of each other, it 
would afford a melancholy prospect. 

The second resolve was then put arid carried. 
Seven States for, three against, and one divided. 
New York in the minority. 

The third resolve was then taken into consideration 
by the convention. 

Mr. Pinckney. I move, " that the members of the 
first branch be appointed in such manner as the sev- 
eral State legislatures shall direct," instead of the mode 






160 SECRET PROCEEDINGS 

reported. If this motion is not agreed to, the other 
will operate with great difficulty, if not injustice. If 
you make district elections, and join, as I presume you 
must, many counties in one district, the largest county 
will carry the election, as its united influence will give 
,B decided majority in its favor. 

Mr, Madison, I oppose the motion. There are 
difficulties, but they may be obviated in the details 
connected with the subject. 

Mr, Hamilton, It is essential to the democratic 
rights of the community, that this branch be directly 
elected by the people. Let us look forward to prob- 
able events. There may be a time when State legis- 
latures may cease, and such an event ought not to 
embarrasd the national government. 

Mr, Mason. I am for preserving inviolably the 
democratic branch of the government. True, we 
have found inconveniences from pure democracies; 
but, if we mean to preserve peace and real freedom, 
they must necessarily become a component part of a 
national government. Change this necessary principle, 
and, if the government proceeds to taxation, the States 
will oppose your powers. 

Mr, Sherman thought, that an amendment to the 
proposed amendment is necessary. 

Governor Rutledge, It is said, that an election by 
representatives is not an election by the people. This 
proposition is not correct. What is done by my order, 
is done by myself. I am convinced, that the mode of 
election by legislatures will be more refined, and better 
men will be sent. 

Mr, Wilson, The legislatures of the States, by the 
proposed motion, will have an uncontrollable sway over 
the general government. Election is the exercise of 



OF THE FfeDERAL CONVENTION. 1§1 

original sovereignty in the people ; but if by represent- 
atives, it is only relative sovereignty. 

Mr. King. The magistrates of the States will ever * 
pursue schemes of their own, and this, on the proposed 
motion, will pervade the national government; and • 
we know the State governments will be ever hostile 
to the general government. 

Mr. Pinckney. All the reasoning of the gentlemen 
opposed to my motion has not convinced me of its 
impropriety. There is an esprit de corps which has 
made, heretofore, every unfederal member of Congress, 
after his election, become strictly federal )■ and this, I 
presume, will ever be the case, in whatever manner 
they may be elected. 

Question put on Mr. Knckney's motion, and carried 
by six States against four ; one divided. 

Question then put on the resolve. Nine States for, 
one against, and one divided. 

Governor Randolph. I move, that, in the resolve 
for the duration of the first branch of the general legis- 
lature, the word *' three " be expunged, and the words 
" two years " be inserted. 

Mr. Dickinson. I am against the amendment. I 
propose, that the word " three " shall remain, but that 
they shall be removable annually in classes. 

Mr. Sherman. I am for one year. Our people are 
accustomed to annual elections. Should the members 
have a longer duration of service, and remain at the 
seat of government, they may forget their constituents, 
and perhaps imbibe the interest of the State in which 
they reside, or there may be danger of catching the 
esprit de corps. 

Mr. Mason. I am for two years. One year is too 
short. In extensive States, four naonths may elapse 
14* 




162 SECRET PROCEEDINGS 

before the returns can be known. Hence the danger 
of their remaining too long unrepresented. 

Mr. Hamilton, There is a medium in every thing. 
1 confess, three years is not too long. A representative 
ought to have full freedom of deliberation, and ought 
to exert an opinion of his own. I am convinced, that 
the public mind will adopt a solid plan. The govern- 
ment of New York, although higher toned than that 
of any other State, still we find great listlessness and 
indiflference in the electors ; nor do they, in general, 
bring forward the first characters to the legislature. 
The public mind is perhaps not now ready to receive 
the best plan of government, but certain circumstances 
are now progressing, which will give a diflferent com- 
plexion to it. - 

Two years' duration agreed to. 

Adjourned to to-morrow morning. 

FRIDAY, JUNE 22d, 1787. 

Met pursuant to adjournment. 

The clause of the third resolve, respecting the sti- 
pends, taken into consideration. 

Judge Ellsworth, I object to this clause. I think 
the State legislatures ought to provide for the members 
of the general legislature ; and as each State will have 
a proportionate number, it will not be burdensome to 
the smaller States. I therefore move to strike out the 
clause. 

Mr, Gorham, If we intend to fix the stipend, it 
may be an objection against the system, as the States 
would never adopt it. I join in sentiment to strike out 
the whole. 

Governor Randolph. I am against the motion. 
Are the members to. be paid ? Certainly. We have 



OF THE FEDERAL CONVENTION. 163 

no sufficient fortunes to induce gentlemen to attend 
for nothing. If the State legislatures pay the mem- 
bers of the national council, they will control the 
members, and cpmpel them to pursue State measures. 
I confess, the payment will not operate impartially, but 
the members must be paid, and be made easy in their 
circumstances. Will they attend. the service of the 
pubHc, without being paid ? 

Mr, Sherman. The States ought to pay their mem- 
bers ; and I judge of the approbation of the people, on 
matters of government, by what I suppose they will 
approve. 

Mr, Wilson, I am against going as far as the re- 
solve. If, howevQ^r, it is intended to throw the national 
legislature into the hand of the States, I shall be against 
it. It is possible, the States may become unfederal, 
and they may then shake the national government. 
The members ought to be paid out of the national 
treasury. 

Mr, Madison, Our attention is too much confined 
to the present moment, when our regulations are in- 
tended to be perpetual. Our national government 
must operate for the good of the whole, and the peo- 
ple must have a general interest in its support; but if 
you make its legislators subject to, and at the mercy 
of, the State governments, you ruin the fabric ,• and 
whatever new States may be added to the general 
government, the expense will be equally borne. 

Mr. Hamilton, I do not think the States ought to 
pay the members, nor am I for a fixed sum. It is a 
general remark, that he who pays is the master. If 
each State pays its own members, the burden would 
be disproportionate, actording to the distance of the 
States from the seat of govemme&t. If a national 



154 

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two ; 

obje« 

pow. 

carry 

a po\ 

of pi 

The 

blesh 

ceed- 

publ 

sent 

mor« 

one, 

pect 

peo). 

deti 

set! 

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to i. 

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tlr 

act 

ar* 

to 

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tv 

I' 



OF THE FEDERAL CONVENTION. 165 

; tell them we made such and such regulations for a 

t general government, because we dared not trust you 

I with any extensive powers, will they be satisfied? 

I nay, will they adopt your government ? And let it 

I ever be remembered, that, without their approbation, 

your government is nothing more than a rope of 
I sand. 

I Mr. Wilson. I am not for submitting the national 

J ' government to the approbation of the State legisla- 

r tures. I know that they and the State officers will 

J oppose it. I am for carrying it to the people of each 

State. 

Mr. Rutledge's motion was then put. Four States 
for the clause ; five against ,• two States divided. New 
York divided. 

The clause, " to be ineligible to any office," &c., 
came next to be considered. 

Mr. Mason moved, that, after the words "two 
years," be added, " and to be of the age. of twenty- 
five years. 

Question put and agreed to. Seven ayes, three 
noes. New York divided. 

Mr. Gorham. I move, that after the words " and 
under the national government for one year after its 
expiration," be struck oiTt. 

Mr. King for the motion. It is impossible to carry 
the system of exclusion so far; and, in this instance, 
we refine too much, by going to Utopian lengths. It 
is a mere cobweb. 

Mr. Butler. We have no way of judging of man- 
kind but by experience. Look at the history of the 
government of Great Britain, where there is a very 
flimsy exclusion ; does it not ruin their government ? 
A man takes a seat in parliament, to get an office for 



166' SECRET PROCEEDINGS 

himself, or friends, or both ; and this is the great source 
from which flows its great venality and corruption. 

Mr. Wihon. I am for striking out the words moved 
for. Strong reasons must induce me to disqualify a 
good man from office. If you do, you give an oppor- 
tunity to the dependent or avaricious man to fill it up, 
for to them offices are objects oi desire. If we admit 
there may be cabal and intrigue between the executive 
and legislative bodies, the exclusion of one year will 
not prevent the effects of it. But we ought to hold 
forth every honorable inducement for men of abilities 
to enter the service of the public. This is truly a re- 
publican principle. Shall talents, which entitle a man 
to public reward, operate as a punishment ? While a 
member of the legislature, he ought to be excluded 
from any other office, but no longer. Suppose a war 
breaks out, and a number of your best military char- 
acters are members ; must we lose the benefit of their 
services ? Had this been the case in the beginning 
of the war, what would have been our situation ? and 
what has happened may happen again. 

Mr. Madison. Some gentlemen give too much 
weight, and others too little, to this subject. If you 
have no exclusive clause, there may be danger of cre- 
ating offices, or augmenting the stipends of those 
already created, in order to gratify some members, if 
they were not excluded. Such an instance has fallen 
within my own observation. I am therefore of opinion, 
that no office ought to be open to a member, which 
may be created or augmented while he is in the legis- 
lature. 

Mr, Mason, It seems as if it was taken for granted, 
that all offices will be filled by the executive, while I 
think many jvill remain in the gift of the legislature. 



OF THE FEDERAL CONVENTION. 167 

In either case, it is necessary to jshut the door against 
corruption. If otherwise, they may make or multiply 
offices in order to fill them. Are gentlemen in earnest, 
when they suppose that this exclusion will prevent 
the first characters from coming forward ? Are we not 
struck at seeing the luxury and venality which has 
already crept in among us ? If not checked, we shall 
have ambassadors to every petty state in Europe ; the 
little republic of, St. Marino not excepted. We must 
in the present system remove the temptation. I ad- 
mire many parts of the British constitution and gov- 
ernment, but I detest their corruption. Why has the 
power of the crown so remarkably increased the last 
century? A stranger, by reading, their laws, would 
suppose it considerably diminished ; and yet, by the 
sole power of appointing the increased officers of gov- 
ernment, corruption pervades every town and village 
in the kingdom. If such a restriction should abridge 
the right of election, it is still necessary, as it will 
prevent the people from ruining themselves ; and will 
not the same causes here produce the same effects ? I 
consider this clause as the corner-stone on which our 
liberties depend ; and if we strike it out we are erect- 
ing a fabric for our destruction. 

Mr, Gorham. The corruption of the English gov- 
ernment cannot be applied to America. This evil 
exists there in the venality of their boroughs : but 
even this corruption has its advantage, as it gives sta- 
bility to their government. We do not know what 
the effect would be, if members of Parliament were 
excluded from offices. The great bulwark of our lib- 
erty is the frequency of elections, and their great dan- 
ger is the septennial parliaments. 

Mr, Hamilton. In all general questions which 



r 



168 SECRET PROCEEDINGS 

become the subjects of discussion, there are always 
some truths mixed with falsehoods. I confess, there is 
danger where men are capable of holding two offices. 
Take mankind in general, they are vicious, — their 
passions may be operated upon. We have been taught 
to reprobate the danger of influence in the British 
government, without duly reflecting how far it was 
necessary to support a good government. We have 
taken up many ideas upon trust, and at last, pleased 
with our own opinions, establish them as undoubted 
truths. Hume's opinion of the British constitution 
confirms the remark, that there is always a body of 
firm patriots, who often shake a corrupt administra- 
tion. Take mankind as they are, and what are they 
governed by ? Their passions. There may be in ev- 
ery government a few choice spirits, who may act 
firom more worthy motives. One great error is, that 
we suppose mankind more honest than they are. Our 
prevailing passions are ambitioil and interest ; and it 
will ever be the duty of a wise government to avail 
itself of those passions, in order to make them subser- 
vient to the public good ; for these ever induce us to 
action. Perhaps a few men in a State, may, from patri- 
otic motives, or to display their talents, or to reap the 
advantage of public applause, step forward ; but, if we 
adopt the clause, we destroy the motive. I am, there- 
fore, against all exclusions and refinements, except 
only in this case ; that, when a member takes his seat, 
he should vacate every other office. It is difficult to 
put any exclusive regulation into eflect. We must, 
in some degree, submit to the inconvenience. 

The question was then put for striking out ; four 
ayes ; four noes j three States divided. New York 
of the number. 

Adjourned till to-morrow morning. 



OF THE FEDjElRAL COJNVENTIOK. 169 

SATURDAY, JUNE 23d, 1787,. 

Met pursuant to adjournment* Present; eleven 
States. 

Mt. Gorham. t move, that the question which 
was yesterday proposed on the clause, " to he paid out 
of the national treasury," be now put. 

Question put } five ayes ; five noes ; one State di- 
vided.. So the clause was lost. 

Mr, Pincknei/ movedy thai that, part of the clause 
which disqualifies 9. person frona holding aii office in 
the St£^te, be expunged, because .the first and best 
characters in a State may thereby be deprived of a 
seat in the national council. \ . ; 

Mr. Wilson. 1 percdve, that some gentlemen are 
of opinion to give a bias in favor of State govern- 
ments. This question* ought to stand on the same 
footing. 

Mr. Sherman.* By the conduct' of some gentle- 
men, we are erecting a kingdom lo act against itself* 
The legii^ature ought to be free and unbiassed. 

Q^uestion put to strike out the words moved fofi 
and carried ; eight ayes, three noes. 

•Mr. Madison. th^n moved, that, after the word 
" established," be added, " or the emoluments whereoif 
shall have beeii augmented by the legislature of the. 
United States, during the time they were members 
thereof, and for one year thereafter." 

Mr. Butler. The proposed amendment does .not 
go far enough. -How easily may this be evaded. 
What was the conduct of George the Second to sup* 
port the pragmatic sanction ? To some of the oppo^^rs 
he gave pensions; others offices, and. some, to put 
them out of the House of Commons, he made Lordis. 
16 



^s.. 



\ 



170 SECRET PROCEEDINGS 

The great Montesquieu says, it is unwise to intrust 
persons with power, which, by being abused, operates 
to the advantage of those intrusted with it. 

Governor Ruiledge was against the proposed amend- 
ment. No person ought to come to the legislature 
with nil eye to his own emolument in any shape. 

Mr. Mason, I differ from my colleague in his 
proposed amendment. Let me state the practice ifi 
the State where we came from. There, all officers 
are appointed by the legislature. Need I add, that 
many of their appointments are most shameful. Nor 
will the check proposed by this amendment be suffi- 
cient. It will soon cease to be any check at all. It 
is asserted, that it will be Very difficult to find men 
sufficiently qualified ad legislators without the induce- 
ment of emolument. I do believe, that men of genius 
will be deterred, unless possessed of greaf virtues. We 
may well dispense with the first characters when desti- 
tute of virtue. I should wish them nev6r to come for- 
ward. But if we do not provide against corruption, 
our government will soon be at an end ; nor would I 
wish to put a man of virtue in the way of temptation. 
Evasions and caballing would evade the amendment. 
Nor ^ould the danger be le^s, if 'the executive has the 
appointmeiftt of officers. The first three or four years 
we might go on well enough ; but what would be 
the case afterwards ? I will add, that such a govern- 
ment ought to be refused by the people ; and it will 
be refused. 

Mr, Madison. My wish iS, that the national leg- 
islature be as uncorrupt as possible. I believe all 
public bodies are inclined, from various motives, to 
support its members ; but it is not always done from 
the base motives of venality. Friendship, and a 



or THE FEDERAL CONVENTION. 171 

knowledge of the abilities of those with whom they 
associate, may produce it. If you bar the door against 
such attachments, you deprive the government of its 
greatest strength and support. Can you always rely on 
the patriotism of the members ? If this be the only 
inducement, you will find a great indifferency in filling 
your legislative body. If we expect to call forth use- 
ful characters, we. must hold out allurements ; nor can 
any great inconvenienfcy arise from such inducements. 
The legislative body must be the road to public hon- 
or ; and the advantage will be greater to adopt my 
motion, than any possible inconvenience. 

Mr, Kingi The intimate association of offices will 
produce a vigorous support to your government. To 
check it would produce no .good consequences. Sup- 
pose connexions are formed? Do they not all tend to 
strengthen the government under which they are 
formed? Le.t, therefore, preferment be open to all 
men. We refine otherwise too much ; nor is it possi- 
ble we cafr eradicate the evil. 

Mr, Wilson, I hope the amendment will be adopt- 
ed. By the last vote it appears, that the convention 
have no apprehension of danger of State appointments. 
It is equally imaginary to apprehend any from the 
national government. That such officers will have 
influence in the legislature, I readily admit; but I 
would not therefore exclude them. If any ill effects 
were to result from it,, the bargain can as well be made 
with the legislature as with the executive. We ought 
not to shut the door of promotfon against the great 
characters in the public councils, froni being rewarded 
by being promoted. If otherwise, \vill not these gen; 
tlemen be put in the. legislatures to prevent them from 
holding offices, by those who wish to enjoy them 
themselves ? 



v 



172 SECRET PROCEEDINGS. 

Mr. Sherman. If we agre6 to this ameDdment, 
our good intentions may be prostrated by changing 
offices to avoid or evade the rule. 

Mr. Gerry. This amendment is of great weight, 
and its consequences ought to be well considered. At 
the beginning of the war we possessed more than Ro- 
man virtue. It appears to me it is qow the reverse. 
We have more land and stock-jobbers than any place 
on earth. It appears to me, that we have constantly 
endeavoured to keep distinct the three great branches 
of government; but, iTwe agree to this motion, it 
mu9t be destroyed, by admit.ting the legislators to share 
in the executive^ or to be too much influenced by the 
executive, in looking up to him for offices. 

Mr. Madison. This question is certainly of much 
moment. There are great advantages in appointing 
such persons as are known. The choice otherwise 
will be chance. How will it operate on the members 
themselves ? Will it not be an objection to become 
mem'bers when they are to be excluded from office ? 
For these reasons I am for the amendment. 

Mr. Butler. These reasons have no force. Char- 
acters fit for offices will always be known. 

Mr. Mason. It is said, it is necessary to open the 
door to induce gentlemen to come into the legislature. 
This door is open, but not immediately. A seat in 
the House will be the %eld to exert talents, and when 
to a good purpose, they will in due time be rewarded. 

Mr. Jenifer. Our senators are appointed .for five 
years, and they can hold no other office. This cir- 
cumstance gives them the greatest confidence of the 
people. 

The question was put on Mr. Madison's amendment, 
and lost ; eight noes ; two ayes ; one State divided. 



OP THE FEDERAL CONVENTION. 173 

diiestion on the clause as amended before. Car- 
ried. Eight ayes, two noes, and one ^tate divided. : 

The question was next on the latter part of the 
clause. 

Mr. Mason. We must retain this clause ; other- 
wise evasions- may be made. The legislature may 
admit of resignations, and thus make members eligi- 
ble ; places may be promised at the close of their dura- 
tion, and that a dependency may be made. 

Mr. Gerry. And this actually has been the case 
in Congress ; a member, resigned to obtain an appoint- 
ment, and had it failed he would have resumed it. 

Mr. Hamilton. The clause may be evaded many 
ways. Offices may be held by proxy ; they may be 
procured by friends, &c. 

Mr. Rutledge. I' admit, in some cases, it may be 
evaded ; but this is no argument against shutting the 
door as close as possiblie. 

The question was then put on this clause, to wit, 
" and for the space of one year after its expiration," 
and negatived. 
• Adjourned to Monday morning. 

MONDAy, JUNE 25th, 1787. 

Met pursuant to adjournment. Present, eleven 
, States. 

Mr.''C. Pinckney. On the question upon the second 
branch of the general legislature, as reported by the 
committee in the fourth resolve, now under considera- 
tion, it will be necessary to inquire into the true situ- 
ation of the people of this country. Without this, we 
can form no adequate idea what kind of govejrnment 
will secure their rights and liberties. There is more 
equality of rank and fortune in America, than in any 
16* 



174 SECRET PROCEEDINGS ,, 

Other country under the sun; and this is likely to 
continue as long as the unappropriated western lands 
remain unsettled. They are equal in rights, nor is 
extreme of poverty to be seen in any part of the Union. 
If we are thus singularly situated, both as to fortune 
and rights, it evidently follows, that we cannot draw 
any useful lessons from the examples of any of the 
European states or kingdoms ; much less can Great 
Britain afford us any striking institution, which can 
b0 adapted to our own situation, unless we indeed in- 

Ik ' tend to establish an hereditary executive, or one for 

life. Great Britain drew its first rude institutions from 
the forests of Germany, and with it that of its nobility. 

^ These having originally in their hands the property 

of the state, the crown of Great Britaia was obliged to 

i. yield to the claims of power, which those lai^e pos- 

sessions enabled them to assert. The commons were 
then too contemptible to form part of the national 
councils. Many parliaments were held, without their 
being represented ; until, in process of time, under the 
protection of the crown, and- forming distinct commu- 
nities, they obtained some weight in the British gov- 
ernment. Prom sUch discordant materials, brought 
casually together, those admirable checks and bal- 
ances, now so much the boast of the British constitu- 
tion, took their rise. But will we be able to c6py from 
this original ? I do not suppose, that in the confed- 
eration there are one hundred gentlemen of sufficient 
fortunes to establish a nobility ; and the equality of 
, others, as to rank, would never admit of the distinc- 
tions of nobility. I lay it therefore down as a settled 
principle, that equality of condition is a leading axiom 
in our government. It may be said,- we must neces-. 
sarily establish checks, lest one rank of people should 



OF q?HE FEDERAIa CONVENTION. 176 

usurp the rights of another. Commerce can never in- 
terfere with the government, nor give a complexion to 
its councils. Can we copy from Greece or Rome? 
Have we their nobles or patricians ? With them, 
offices were open to few. The different ranks in the 
community formed opposite interests, and produced 
unceasing struggles and disputes. Can this apply 
equally to the* free yeomanry of America? . We surely 
differ from the whole. Our situation is unexampled ; 
and it is in our power, on different grounds, to secure 
civil and religious liberty ; and when we secure these, 
we secure every thing that is necessary to establish 
happiness. We cannot pretend to rival the European 
nations in their grandeur or power ; nor is the situa- 
tion of any two .nations so exactly alike, as that one 
can adopt the regulations or government of the other. 
If we have any distinctions, they may be divided into 
three classes. 

1. Professional men. 

2. Commercial men. 

3. The landed interest; 

The latter is the governing power of America, and 
the other two must ever be dependent on them. Will 
a national government 6uit them? No. The three 
orders have necessarily a mixed interest ; and, in that 
view, I repeat it again, the United States of America 
compose, in fact, but one ofder. The clergy and no- 
bility of Great Britain can .never be adopted by us. 
Our government must be made suitable to the people, 
and we are perhaps the only people in the world "who 
ever had sense enough to appoint delegates to establish' 
a general government. I believe j that the. propositions 
from Virginia, with some amendments, will satisfy the 
people. But a general government must not be made 
dependent on the State governments. 



17ft SECRET PROCEEDINGS 

• The United States include a territory of about one: 
thousand five hundred miles in length, and in breadth 
about four hundred; the whole of which is divided 
into States and districts. While we were dependent 
on the crown of Great Britain, it was in contemplation 
to have formed the whole into one ; but it was found 
impracticable. No legislature could make good laws 
for the whole, nor can it now be done.. It would 
necessarily place the power in the hands of the. few, 
nearest the seat of government. State governments 
must therefore remain, if you mean to prevent confu- 
sion. The general negative powers will support the 
general government. Upon these considerations, I am 
led to form the second branch difierently from the re- 
port. Their powers are important, and the number 
not too large, upon the principle of proportion. I have 
considered the subject with great attention ; and I 
propose this plan, (reads it,) and if no belter plan is 
proposed, I will then move its adoption. - 

Mr, Randolph moved, that the fourth resolve be 
divided, in the same manner as the third resolve. 

Mr, Gorham moved the question on the first re- 
solve. Sixteen members from one State will certainly 
have greater weight than the same number of mem- 
bers from difierent States. We must, therefore, depart 
from this rule of apportionment, in some shape or 
other ; perhaps on the plan Mr. Pinckney has ' sug- 
gested. 

-Mr. Read, Some gentlemen argue, that the repre- 
sentation must be determined according to the weight 
of each State ; that we have heretofore been partners 
in trade, in which we all put in our respective propor- 
tions of stock ; that the articles of our copartnership 
were drawn in forming the confederation ; and that, 



OP THE FEDERAL CONVENTION. 177 

t . ■ 

before we make a new copartnership, we must first 
settle the old business. But, to drop the allusion, we 
find that Ihe great States have appropriated to them- 
selves the cpmmon lands in their respective States. 
These lands having been forfeited, as heretofore be-, 
longing 'to the King, ought to be applied to th-^ dis- 
charge of our public debts. Let this still be done^ 
and then,Jf you please, proportion the representation, 
and we shall not be jealous of one s^nother. A jealousy 
in a great measure owing to the publfc property being 
appropriated by individual States ; and which, as it 
has been gained by the united power of the confedera- 
tion, ought to be appropriated to the discharge of the 
public debts. 

Mr, Oorham, This motion has been agitated often 
in Congress ; and it was owing to the want o/. power, 
rather than inclination, that it w^s not justly settled. 
Great surrenders have been made by the great States, 
for the benefit of the confederation. 

Mr. Wilson, The question now before us is, 
whether the second branch of the general legislature! 
shall or shall not be appointed by the State legisla- 
tures. In every point of view it is an important ques- 
tion. The magnitude, of the object is indeed embar- 
rassing. The great system of Henry the Fourth, of . 
Prance, aidedby the greatest statesmen, is small when . 
compared to the fabric we are now about to erect. In 
laying the stone amiss, we may injure the superstruc- 
ture ; and what Will be the consequence, if the corner- 
stone should be loosely placed ? It is improper, that ^ 
the State legislatures should have the power contem- 
plated to be given them. A citizen of America may 
be considered in two points of view; as a citizen of 
the general government, and as. a citizen of the partic- 



9 



178 SECRET PROCEEDINGS ^ 

ular St&te in which he may reside. We ought to 
^ consider in what character he acts in forming a geu- 
eral government. I am both a citizen of Bennsylva^ 
i. nia and of the United States. I must, therefore, lay- 
aside my State connexions, and act for the general 
■V good of the whole. We must forget our local habits 

vand attachments. The gendtal government should 
not depend on the State governments. This ought 
to be a leading distinction between the one and the 
other ; nor ought the general government to be com- 
posed of ail assemblage of diiSerent State governments. 
We have unanimously agreed to establish a general 
- government ; that the powers of peace, war, treaties, 
coinage, and regulating of commerce, ought to reside 
in that government. And if we reason in this manner, 
we shall soon see the impropriety of admitting the 
interference of State governments fnto the general 
government. Equality of representation can not be 
established, if the second branch is elected by the 
State legislatures.. When we are laying the founda- 
tion of a building;, which is to last for. ages, and in 
which millions are interested, it ought to be well laid. 
If the national government does not act upon State 
prejudices, State distinctions will be lost. I therefore 
move, " That the second branch of the legislature of 
the national government be elected by electors chosen 
by the people of the United States." 

Judge Ellsworth. I think the second branch of the 
general legislature ought to be elected agreeably to the 
report. The other way, it is said,- will be more the 
choice of the people. The one mode is as much so as 
the other. No doubt every citizen of every State is 
interested in the State governments ; and, elect him in 
whatever manner you please, whenever he takes a 



OF THE FEDERAL CONVENTION. 179 

seat in the general government, it will prevail in some 
shape or other. The State .legislatures are more com- 
petent to make a judi<?iou» choice, than the people at 
large. Instability pervades their choice. In the -^t 
second branch of the general government we want 
wisdom and firmness. As to balances, where nothing 
can be balanced, it is a perfect Utopian scheme. But. 
still greater advantages will result in having a second 
branch endowed with the qualifications I have men- 
tioned. Their weight and wisdom may check the 
inconsiderate and hasty proceedings of the first branch. 
I cannot see the force of the reasoning in attempt- 
ing to detach the State governments from the general ^ 
government, fn that case, without a standing army, 
you cannot support the general government, but on 
the pillars of the State governments. Are the larger 
States now more energetic than the smaller ? Massa- 
chusetts cannot support a government at the distance 
of one hundred miles from her capital, without aH 
army ; and how long Virginia and Pennsylvania will ' 
support their governments it is .difficult to say. Shall 
we proceed like unskilful workmen, and make use of 
timber, which is too weak to build a first-rate ship ? • 
We know that the people of the States are strongly 
attached to their own constitutions. If you hold up a 
system of general government, destructive of their con- 
stitutional rights, they will oppose it. Some are of 
opinion, that if we cannot form a general government 
so as to destroy State governments, we ought at least; 
to balance the one against the* other. On the con- 
trary, the only chance we hdve to support a general 
government is to graft it on the State governments, 
I want to proceed o© this ground, as the safest, and I 
believe no other plan is practicable. In this way, and 



« 180 SECRET PIIOCEEDIMGS 

) in this way only, can we rely on the confidence and 

t support of the people. 

I Dr. Johnstm. The State governments must be 

preserved; but this motion leaves them at the will 
and pleasure of the general government. 

^, Mr. McLdison. I find great differences of opinion in 

\ this convention on the clause now under considera- 

tion. Let us postpone it in order to take up the eighth 
resolve, that we may previously determine the mode 

\ of representation. 

{ Mr. Mason. All agree that a more efficient gov- 

ernment is necessary. It is equally necessary to pre- 

.'* serve the State governments, as they ought to have 

the means of self-defence. On the motion of Mr. 
Wilson, the only means, they oi^ht to have would be 
destroyed. 

The question was put for postponing, in order to 
take into consideration the eighth resolve, and lost \ 
seven noes ; four ayes. 

Question on the first clause in the fourth resolve ; 
nine States for ; two against it. 

The age of the senators (thirty years) agreed to, 
Mr. Gorham proposed, that the senators be classedi 
and to remain four years in office ; otherwise great in- 
conveniences may arise, if a dissolution should take 
place at once. 

.Governor Randolph. This body must act with 
firmness. They may -possibly always sit, — perhaps 
to aid the executive. The State governments will 
always attempt to counteract the general government. 
They ought to go out in classes ; therefore I move, 
" That they go out of office in fixed proportions of 
time," instead of the words, "seven years." 

Mr. Read moved (though not seconded), that they 
ought to continue in office during good behaviour. 



V 



« 'it..' 

OF THE FEDERAL CONVEI9TIQN. 181 

Mr. Williamson moved, that they remain in office 
for six years. 

Mr. Pinckney. I am for four years. Longer time 
would give them too great attachment to the States, 
where the general government may reside. They 
may be induced, from the proposed length of time, to 
sell their estates, and become inhabitants near the 
seat of government. 

Mr. Madison. We are proceeding in the same 
manner that was done when the confederation was 
first formed. Its original draft was excellent, but in 
its progress and completion it became so insufficient 
as to give rise to the present convention. By the vote 
already taken, will not the temper of the State legis- 
latures transfuse itself into the Senate ? Do we create- 
a free government ? 

Question on Governor Randolph's motion ; seven, 
ayes ; three noes ; one divided. 

Motion to fix the term of service at six years ,* five- 
ayes ; five noes ; one divided. 

Do. for five years ; five ayes ; five noes ; one di- 
vided. 

The question for four years was not put ; and the 
convention adjourned till to-morrow morning. 

TUESDAY, JUNE a6TH, 1787. 
Met pursuant to adjournment. Present, eleven^ 



Mr. Gorham. My motion for four years' continu-' 
ance, was not put yesterday. I am still of opinion, 
that classes will be necessary, but I would alter the 
time. I therefore move, that the senators be elected 
for six years, and that the rotation be triennial. 

Mr. Pinckney. I oppose the time, because of too 
16 



t-t. -• 



182 SECRET PROCEEDINGS 

long a continuance. The members will. by this meani; 
be too long separated from their constituents, and will 
imbibe attachments different from that of the State ; 
nor is there any danger that members, by a shorter 
duration of office, will not support the interest of the 
Union, or that the States will oppose the general in- 
terest. The State of South Carolina was never op- 
posed in principle to Congress, nor thwarted their 
views in any case, except in the requisition of money, 
and. then only for want of power to comply ; for it 
was found there was not money enough in the State 
to pay their requisition. 

Mr. Read moved, that the term of " nine ye?irs " 
be inserted in triennial rotation. 

Mr, Madison. We are now to determine, whether 
the republican form shall be the basis of our govern- 
ment. I admit, there is weight in the objection of the 
gentleman from South Carolina ,• but no plan can steer 
jclear of objections. That great powers are to be given, 
there is no doubt; and that those powers may be 
abused is equally true. It is also probable, that mem- 
bers may lose their attachments to the States which 
sent them. Yet, the first branch will control them in 
many of their abuses. But we are now forming a 
body on whose wisdom we mean to rely, and their 
permanency in office secures a proper field in which 
they may exert their firmness and knowledge. Demo- 
cratic communities may be unsteady, and be led to 
action by the impulse of the moment. Like individ- 
uals, they may be sensible of their own weakness, and 
may desire the counsels and checks of friends to guard 
them against the turbulency and weakness of unruly 
passions. Such are the various pursuits of this life, 
that, in all civilized countries, the interest of a com- 



OF THE FEDERAL COWVENTJON. 183 

munity will be divided. There will be debtors and 
creditors, and an unequal possession of property, and 
hence arise diflferent views and diflferent objects in 
government. This, indeed, is the ground-work of 
aristocracy ; and we find it blended in every govern- 
ment, both ancient and modern. Even where titles 
have survived property, we discover the noble beggar, 
haughty and assuming. 

The man who is possessed of wealth, who lolls on 
his sofa or rolls in his carriage, cannot judge of the 
wants or feelings of the day laborer. The govern- 
ment we mean to erect is intended to last for ages. 
The landed interest, at present, is prevalent ; but, in 
process of time, when we approximate to the states 
and kingdoms of Europe ; when the number of land- 
holders shall be comparatively small, through the vari- 
ous means of trade and manufactures, will not the 
landed interest be overbalanced in future elections, 
and unless wisely provided against, what will become 
of your government ? In England, at this day, if elec- 
tions were open to all classes of people, the property 
of the landed proprietors would be insecure. An agra- 
rian law would-^soon take place. If these observations 
be just, our government ought to secure the perma- 
nent interests of the country against innovation. 
Landholders ought to have a share in the government, 
to support these invaluable interests, and to balance 
and check the other. They ought to be so constitut- 
ed as to protect the minority of the opulent against 
the majority. The Senate, therefore, ought to be 
this body ; and to answer these purposes, they ought 
to have permanency and stability. Various have been 
the propositions ; but my opinion is, the longer they 
continue in office, the better will these views be an- 
sweredi 



fc-if 



184 SECRET PROCEEDINGS j^ ^ 

Mr. Sherman. The two objects of this body are 
permanency and safety to those who are to be gorern- 
ed. A b^d government is the worse for being long, 
Frequent elections give security and even permanen- 
cy. In Connecticut, we have existed one hundred and 
thirty-two years under an annual government ; and, 
as long as a man behaves himself well, he is never 
turned out of office. Four years to the Senate is 
quite sufficient, when you add to it the rotation pro- 
posed. 

Mr. Hamilton. This question has already been 
considered in several points of view. We are now 
forming a republican government. Real liberty is 
neither found in despotism or the extremes of democ- 
racy, but in moderate governments. 

Those who mean to form a solid republican gov- 
ernment, ought to proceed to the confines of another 
government. As long as offices are open to all men, 
and no constitT,itional rank is established, it is pure 
republicanism. But, if we incline too much to de- ' 
mocracy, we shall soon shoot into a monarchy. The 
diflference of property is already great amongst us. 
Commerce and industry will still increase the dispar- 
ity. Your government must meet this state of things, 
or combinations will, in process of time, undermine 
your system. What was the tribunitial power of 
Rome ? It was instituted by the plebeians as a guard 
against the patricians. But was this a sufficient 
check? No. The only distinction which remained 
at Rome, was, at last, between the rich and the poor. 
The gentleman from Connecticut forgets, that the de- 
mocratic body is already secure in a representation. 
As to Connecticut, what were the little objects of 
their government before the Revolution ? Colonial con- 



";;. OF THE FEDERAL CONVENTION. 186 

ceras merely. They ought now to act on a more ex- 
tended scale ; and dare they do this? Dare they col- 
lect the taxes and requisitions of Congress ? Such a 
government may do well, if they do not tax ; and this 
is precisely their situation. 

Mr, Gerry, It appears to me, that the American 
people have the greatest aversion to monarchy ; and 
the nearer our government approaches to it, the less 
chance have we for their approbation. Can gentlemen 
suppose, that the reported system can be approved of 
by them ? Demagogues are the great pests of our gov- 
ernment, and have occasioned most of our distresses. 
If four years are insufficient, a future convention may 
lengthen the time. 

Mr. Wilson, The motion is now for nine years, 
and a triennial rotation. Every nation attends to its 
foreign intercourse, to support its commerce, to pre- 
vent foreign contempt, and to make war and peace. 
Our Senate will be possessed of these powers, and 
therefore ought to be dignified and permanent. What 
is the reason, that Great Britain does not enter into a 
commercial treaty with us? Because Congress have 
not the power to enforce its observance. But give 
them those powers, and give them the stability pro- 
posed by the motion, and they will have more perma- 
nency than a monarchical government. The great 
objection of many is, that this duration would give 
birth to views inconsistent with the interests of the 
Union. This can have no weight, if the triennial ro- 
tation is adopted ; and this plan may possibly tend to 
conciliate the minds of the members of the convention 
on this subject, which have varied more than on any 
other question. 

16* 



186 SECRET PROCEEDINGS 

The question was then put on Mr. Read's motion, 
and lost. Eight noes, three ayes. 

The question on five years, and a biennial rotation^ 
was carried. Seven ayes, four noes. New York in 
the minority. 

Mr. Pinckney. I move, that the clause for granting 
stipends be stricken out. 

duestion put. Five ayes, six noes. 

On /-the amendment to the question, "to receive a 
compensation." Ten ayes, one no. 

Judge Ellsworth, I move, that the words, "out 
of the national treasury," be stricken out, and the 
words, "the respective State legislatures," be inserted. 

If you ask the States what is reasonable, they will 
comply ; but if you ask of them more^ than is neces- 
sary to form a good government, they will grant you 
nothing. 

Captain Dayton. The members should be paid 
firom the general treasury, to make them independent. 

The question was put on the amendment, and lost. 
Five ayes, six noes. 

Mr. Mason. I make no motion, but throw out for 
the consideration of the convention, whether a person 
in the second branch ought not to be qualified as to 
property. 

The question was then put on the clause, Mid lost. 
Five ayes, six noes. 

It was moved to strike out the clause, " to be inel- 
igible to any State office." 

Mr. Madison: Congress heretofore depended on 
State interests. We are now going to pursue the 
same plan. 

Mr. Wilson. Congress has been ill managed, be- 
cause particular States controlled the Union* In this 



of' the federal convention. 187 



t 



convention, if a proposal is made promising indepen- 
dency to the general government, before we have done 
with it, it is so modified and changed as to amount to 
nothing. In the present case, the States may say, 
although I appoint you for six years, yet, if you are 
against the State, your table will be unprovided. Is 
this the way you are to erect an independent govern- 
ment? 

Mr. Butler. This second branch I consider as the 
aristocratic part of our government ; and they must be 
controlled by the States, or they will be too inde- 
pendent. 

Mr. Pinckney. The States and general govern- 
ment must stand together. On this plan have I acted 
throughout the whole of this business. I am therefore 
for expunging the clause. Suppose a member of this 
House was qualified to be a State judge, must the 
State be prevented from making the appointment ? 

duestion put for striking out. Eight ayes, three 
noes. 

The fifth resolve, " that each House have the right 
of originating bills," was taken into consideration, and 
agreed to. 

Adjourned till to-morrow morning. 

WEDNESDAY, JUNE 27th, 1787. 

Met pursuant to adjournment. Present, eleven 
States. 

The sixth resolve was postponed, in order to take 
into consideration the seventh and eighth resolves. 
The first clause of the seventh was proposed for con- 
sideration, which respected the suffrage of each State 
in the first branch of the legislature. 

[jy[r. Ihrtin, the Attorney-General from Marylandp 



188 SECRET PROCEEDINGS 

spoke on this subject upwards of three hours. As his 
arguments were too diffuse, and in many instances de- 
sultory, it was not possible to trace him through the 
whole, or to methodize his ideas into a systematic or 
argumentative arrangement. I shall therefor^ only 
note such points as I conceive merit most particular 
notice.] 

The question is important, said Mr. Martin, and I 
have already expressed my sentiments on the subject. 
My opinion is, that the general government ought to 
protect and secure the State governments. Others, 
however, are of a different sentiment, and reverse the 
principle. 

The present reported system is a perfect medley of 
confederated and national government, without exam- 
ple and without precedent. Many, who wish the gen- 
eral government to protect the State governments, are 
anxious to have the line of jurisdiction well drawn and 
defined, so that they may not clash. This suggests 
the necessity of having this line well detailed. Possi- 
bly this may be done. If we do this, the people will 
be convinced that we mean well to the State govern- 
ments J and should there be any defects, they ^ill 
trust a future convention with the power of making 
further amendments. 

A general government may operate on individuals 
in cases of general concern, and still be federal. This 
distinction is with the States, as States, represented by 
the people of those States. States will take care of 
their internal police and local concerns. The general 
goveriunent has no interest but the protection of the 
whole. Every other government must fail. We are 
proceeding in forming this government, as if there 
were no State governments at all. The States must 



OF THE FEDERAL CONVENTION. 189 

approve, or you will have none at all. I have never.' 
heard of a confederacy having two legislative branches. 
Even the celebrated Mr. Adams, who talks so much 
of checks and balances, does not suppose it necessary 
in a confederacy. Public and dongiestic debts are our 
great distress. The treaty between Virginia and Ma- 
ryland, about the navigation of the Chesapeake and 
Potomac, is no infraction of the confederacy. The 
corner-stone of a federal government, is equality of 
votes. States may surrender this right ; but if they 
do, their liberties are lost. If I err on this point, it is 
the error of the head, not of the heart. 

The first principle of government is founded on the 
natural rights of individuals, and in perfect equality. 
Locke, Vattel, Lord Somers, and Dr. Priestley, all 
confirm this principle. This principle of equality, 
when applied to individuals, is lost in some degree, 
when he becomes a member of a society, to which it 
is transferred ; and this society, by the name of state 
or kingdom, is, with respect to others, again On a per- 
fect footing of equality, — a right to govern themselves 
as they please. Nor can any other state, of right, de- 
prive them of this equality. If such a state confed- 
erates, it is intended for the good of the whole ; and 
if it again confederate, those tights must be well 
guarded. Nor can any state demand a surrender of 
any of those rights ; if it can, equality is already de- 
stroyed. We must treat as free States with each other, 
upon the same terms of equality that men originally 
formed themselves into societies. Vattel, Rutherford, 
and Locke, are united in support of the position, that 
states, as to each other, are in a state of nature. 

Thus, said Mr. Martin, have I travelled with the 
most respectable authorities in support of principles^ all 






190 S£CRET PR0CEEDII9GS 

tending to prove the equality of independent states. 
This is eqiially applicable to the smallest as well as the 
largest states, on the true principles of reciprocity and 
political freedom. 

Unequal confederacies can never produce good ef- 
fects. Apply this to the Virginia plan. Out of the 
number ninety, Virginia has sixteen votes, Massachu- 
setts" fourteen, Pennsylvania twelve, — in all, forty-- 
two. Add to this a State having four votes, and it 
gives a majority in the> general legislature. Conse- 
quently, a combination of these States will govern the 
remaining nine or ten States. Where is the safety, 
and independency of those States ? Pursue this sub- 
ject further. The executive is to be appointed by the 
legislature, and becomes the executive in consequence 
of this undue influence. And hence flows the appoint- 
ment of all your ofiicers, civil, military, and judicial. 
The executive is also to have a negative on all laws. 
Suppose the possibility of a combination of ten States, 
He negatives a law ; it is totally lost, because those 
States cannot form two thirds of the legislature. I 
am willing to give up private interest for the public 
good ; but I must be satisfied first, that it is the public 
interest ; and who can decide this point ? A majority 
only of the Union. 

The Lacedemonians insisted, in the amphictyonic 
council, to exclude some of the smaller states from a 
right to vote, in oider that they might tyrannize over 
them. If the plan now on the. table be adopted, three 
States in the Union have the control, and they may 
make use of their power when they please. 

If there exist no separate interests, there is no dan- 
ger of an equality of votes ; and, if there be danger, 
the smaller States cannot yield. If the foundation of 



OF THE:FEDERAL CONVENTION. . 191 

the existing confederation is well laid, powers may be 
added. You may safely add a third story to a houite * 
where the fomidation is good. Read then the votCiS 
and proceedings of Congress on forming the confed- 
eration. Virginia only was opposed to the principle 
of equality. The smaller States yielded rights, not 
the large States. They gave up their* claim to the 
unappropriated lands with the tenderness of the mother 
recorded by Solomon ; they sacrificed affection to the 
preservation of others. New Jersey and .Maryland 
rendered more essential services during the war than 
many of the larger States. The partial representation 
in Congress is not the cause of its weakness, but the 
want of power. I would not trust a government or- 
ganized upon the reported plan, for all the slaves of 
Carolina or the horses and oxen of Massachusetts^ - 
Price says, that laws made by one man, or a set of 
men, and not by common consent, is slavery. And it 
is so when applied to States, if you give them an un- 
equal representation. What are called human feelings 
in this instance, are only the feelings of ambition and 
the lust of power. 

Adjourned till to-morrow morning. 

THURSDAY, JUNE 28th, 1787. 

Met pursuant to adjournment. 

MK Martin in continuation. 

On federal grounds, it is said, that a minority will 
govern a majority ; but, on the Virginia plan, a mi- 
nority would tax a majority. In a federal govern- * 
ment, a majority of States must, and ought to tax. 
In the local government of States, counties may bq. 
unequal ; still numbers, not property, govern. What 
is the governmeoit now forming, over States or per- 



192 SECRET PROCEEDINGS 

sons ? As to the latter, their rights cannot be the ob- 
ject of a general government. These are already 
secured by their guardians, the State governments. 
The general government is, therefore, intended only to 
protect and guard the rights of the States, as States. 

This general government, I believe, is the first 
upon earth which gives checks against democracies or 
aristocracies. The only necessary check in a general 
government ought to be a restraint to prevent its ab- 
sorbing the powers of the State governments. Rep- 
resentation on federal principles can only flow from 
State societies. Representation and taxation are ever 
inseparable ; not according to the quantum of proper* 
ty, but the quantum of freedom. ' 

Will the representatives of a State foi^t State 
interests? The mode of election cannot change it. 
These prejudices cannot be eradicated. Your general 
government cannot be just or equal upon the Virginia 
plan, unless you abolish State interests. If this can* 
not be done, you must go back to principles purely 
federal. 

On this latter ground, the State legislatures and 
their constituents will have no interests to pursue dif- 
ferent from the general government, and both will be 
interested to support each other. Under these ideas 
can it be expected, that the people can approve the 
Virginia plan ? But it is said, the people, not the State 
legislatures, will be called upon for approbation ; with 
an evident design to separate the interest of the gov- 
ernors from the governed. What must be the conse- 
quence ? Anarchy and confusion. We lose the idea 
of the powers with which we are intrusted. The 
legislatures must approve. By them it must, on your 
own plan, be laid before the people.. How will suck 



OF THE FEDERAL CONVSNTION. 193 

a government, over so many great States, operate ? 
Wherever new settlements have been formed in large 
States, they immediately want to shake oflF their inde- 
pendency. Why? Because the government is too 
remote for their good. The people want it nearer 
home. 

The basis of all ancient and modem confederacies 
is the freedom and the independency of the states 
composing it. The states forming the amphictyonic 
council were equal, though Lacedemon, one of the 
greatest states, attempted the exclusion of three of 
the lesser states from this right. The plan reported, 
it is true, only intends to diminish those rights, not to 
annihilate them. It was the ambition and power of 
the great Grecian states which at last mined this re-, 
spectable council. The states, as societies, are ever 
respectful. Has Holland or Switzerland ever com- 
plained of the equality of the states which compose* 
their respective confederacies ? Bern and Zurich are- 
larger than the remaining eleven cantons ; so of many 
45f the states of Germany ; and yet, their governments. 
«re not complained of. Bern alone might usurp tho 
whole power of the Helvetic confederacy, but she is. 
contented still with being equal. 

The admission of the larger States into the confed- 
eration, on the principles of- equality, is dangerous. 
But, on the Virginia system, it is minous and destmc- 
tive. Still it is the true interest of all the States to 
confederate. It is their joint efforts which must pro- 
tect and secure us from foreign danger, and give us ^ 
peace and harmony at home. 

[Here Mr. Martin entered into a detail of the com- 
parative powers of each State, and stated their prob- 
able weakness and strength.] 
17 



^ 



V 



194 SECRET PROCEEDINGS 

At the begioning of our troubles with Great Brit- 
ain, the smaller States were att^npted to be cajoled to 
submit to the Tiews of that nation, lest the larger 
States dumld usurp their rights. We then answered 
Ifaem, Your present plan is slavery, which, on the 
remote prospect of a distant evil, we will not submit to. 

I would rather confederate with any single State, 
than submit to the Yirginia plan. But we are already 
confederated, and no power on earth can. dissolve it 
but by the consent of all the contracting powers; and 
four States, on this floor, have already declared their 
opposition to annihilate it. Is the old confederation 
dissolved, because some of the States wish a new con- 
federation ? 

Mr. Lansing, I move, that the word "not" be 
struck out of the resolve, and then the question will 
stand on its proper ground ; and the resolution wiU 
read thus : " That the representation of the first branch 
be according to the articles of the confederation ;" and 
the sense of the convention on this point will deter- 
mine the question of a federal or national government 

Mr, Madison, I am. against the motion. I confess 
the necessity of harmonizing, and if it could be shown, 
that the system is unjust or unsafe, I would be against 
it. There has been much fallacy in the ^arguments 
advanced by the gentleman from Maryland. He has, 
without adverting to many manifest distinctions, con- 
sidered confederacies and treaties as standing on the 
same basis. In the one, the powers act collectively, 
in the other individually. Suppose, for example, that 
France, Spain, and some of the smaller states in Europe, 
should treat on war or peace, or on any other general 
concern, it would be done on principles of equality ; 
but, if they were to form a plan of general govern- 



OF THE FEDERAL CONVENTION. 196 

ment, would they give, or are the greater states ob- 
liged to give to the lesser, the same and equal legis- 
lative powers? Surely not. They might differ on 
this point, but no one can say, that the large states 
were wrong in refusing this concession. Nor can the 
gentleman's reasoning apply to the present powers of 
Congress ; for they may, and do, in some cases, affect 
property, and, in case of war, the lives of the citizens. 
Can any of the lesser States be endangered by an ad- 
equate representation ? Where is the probability of a 
combination ? What the inducements ? Where is the 
similarity of customs, manners, or religion ? If there 
possibly can be a diversity of interest, it is the case 
of the three large States. Their situation is remote, 
their trade different. The staple of Massachusetts is 
fish, and the carrying trade ; of Pennsylvania, wheat 
and flour ; of Virginia, tobacco. Can States thus 
situated in trade, ever form such a combination ? Do 
we find those combinations in the larger counties in 
the different State governments to produce rivalships? 
Does not the history of the nations of the earth 
verify it ? Rome rivalled Carthage, and could not 
be satisfied before she was* destroyed. The houses 
of Austria and Bourbon acted on the -same view ; 
and the wars of Prance and England have been 
waged through rivalship; and let me add, that we, 
in a great measure, owe our independency to those 
national contending passions. France, through this 
motive, joined us. She might, perhaps, with less 
expense, have induced England to divide America 
between them. In Greece the contention was ever 
between the larger states. Sparta against Athens; 
and these again, occasionally, against Thebes, were 
ready to devour each other. Germany presents the 



;SM " SECRET PROCEEDINGS 

Bkme prospect, — Prussia against Austria. Do th6 
greater provinces in Holland endanger the liberties ci 
the lesser 1 And .let me remark, that the weaker ycm 
mi^e your confederation, the greater the danger 16 
Ihe lesser States. They can only be protected by k 
sirong federal government. Those gentl^ooen who 
expose the Virginia plan do not sufficiently BntStyz6 
the subject Their remarks, in general, are vague 
and inconclusive. 

Capiain Dayton. On the discussion of this ques- 
tion the fate of the State governments depend. 

Mr. Williamswi. If any argument^ will admit of 
demonstration, it is that which declares, that all men 
have an equal right in society. Against this position^ 
I have heard, as yet, no argimient, and I could wirii 
to hear what could be said against it. What is tyr»H 
ny ? Representatives of representatives, if joa ghr^ 
them the power of taxation. From equals take «}liaU^ 
and the remainder is equal. What process is to mmt' 
hilate smaller States, I know not. But I kopw H 
must be tyranny, if the smaller States can t$x the 
greater, in order, to ease themselves. A general gor» 
ernment cannot exercise direct taxation. Money must 
be raised by duties and imposts, &c.,'and this wilt 
operate equally. It is impossible to tsuc according to 
numbers. Can a man over the mountcdns, where pro 
duce is a drug, pay equal with one near the shore ? 

Mr. Wilson. I should be glad to hear the gentle- 
man from Maryland explain himself upon the remark 
. of Old Sarum, when compared with the city of Loii- 
don. This he has allowed to be an unjust propoi*- 
tion ; as in the one place one man sends two members, 
and in the other, one million are represented by four 
members. I would be glad to hear how he applie» 



OF THfi FEDERAL CONVENTION. 197 ' 

this to the larger and smaller States in America ; and 
whether the borough, as a borough, is represented, or 
the people of the borough. 

Mr. Martin rose to explain. Individuals, as com- 
posing a part of the whole of one consolidated govern- 
ment, are there represented. 

The further consideration of the question was post- 
poned. 

Mr. Sherman. In society, the poor are equal to 
the rich in voting, although one pays more than the 
other. This arises from an equal distribution of lib- 
erty amongst all ranks ; and it is, on the same grounds, 
secured to the States in the confederation; for this 
would not even trust the important powers to a major- 
ity of the States; Congress has too many checks, and 
its powers are too limited. A gentleman from New 
York thinks a limited monarchy the best government, 
and no State di^stinctions. The plan now before us 
gives the power to four States to govern nine States. 
As they will have the purse, they may raise troops, 
and can also make a king when they please. 

Mr. Madison. There is danger in the idea of the 
gentleman from Connecticut. Unjust representation 
will ever produce it. In the United Netherlands, Hol- 
land governs the whole, although she has only one 
vote. The counties in Virginia are exceedingly dis- 
proportionate, and yet the smaller have an equal vote 
with the greater, and no inconvenience arises. 

Governor Franklin read some remarks, acknowl- 
edging the difficulties of the present subject. Neither ,^ 
ancient nor modern history, said Governor Franklin, 
can give us light. As a sparrow does not fall without 
Divine permission, can we suppose that governments 
can be erected without his will? We shall, I am 
17* 



198 SECRET PROCEEDINGS 

afraid, .be disgraced through little party views. I 
move, that we have prayers every morning. 
Adjourned till to-morrow morning. 

FRIDAY, JUNE 29»h, 1787. 

Met pursuant to adjournment. Present, eleven 
States. 

Dr. Johnson. As the debates have hitherto beea 
managed, they may be spun out to an endless length ; 
ind as gentlemen argue on different groirnds, they are 
equally conclusive on the points they advance, bat 
afford no demonstration either way« States are polite 
ical societies. For whom are we to form a goveiiH 
ment ? for the people of America, or for those societiea^ 
Undoubtedly for the latter. They must^ th^efora^ 
have a voice in the second hraneh of the general govw 
ernment, if you mean to pceserve thedr existence. The 
people already compose the first branch. This mix«« 
ture is proper and necessary. For we cannot form 9 
general government on any other ground. 

Mr. Gorham. I perceive oo difficulty in supposing 
a union of interest in the different States. Massachur 
setts formerly consisted of three distinct provinces. 
They have been united into one, and we do not find 
the least trace of party distinctions arising from their 
former separation. Thus it is, that the interest of the 
smaller States will unite in a general government. It 
is thus they will be su|^x>rted. Jersey, in particular, 
rituated between Philadelphia and New York, can 
never become a commercial State. It would be her 
interest to be divided, and part annexed to New York 
and part to Pennsylvania ; or otherwise the whole to 
the general government. Massachusetts cannot long 
remain a large State. The Province of Maine must 



OF THE FEDERAL CONVENTION. 199 

soon become independent of her. Pennsylvania, can 
never become a dangerous State ; her western country 
must, at some period, become separated from her, and 
consequently her power will be diminished. If some 
States will not confederate on a new plan, I will re- 
main here, if only one State will consent to confeder- 
ate with us. 

Judge Ellsworth. I do not despair but that we 
shall be so fortunate as to devise and adopt some good 
plan of government. 

Judge Read. I would have no objection, if the 
gOYernment was more national ,' but the proposed plan 
is so great a mixture of both, that it is best to drop it 
altogether. A State government is incompatible with 
a general government. If it was more national, I 
would be for a representation proportionate to popular 
tion. The plan of the gentleman from New York is 
certainly the best ; but the great evil is, the* unjust ap* 
propriation of the public lands. If there was bwt one 
national government, we would be all equally inter- 
ested. 

Mr. Madison. Some gentlemen are afraid, that 
the plan is not sufficiently national, while others appra* 
bend, that it is too much so. If this point of repre- 
sentation was once well fixed, we would come nearer 
to one another In sentiment. The necessity would 
then be discovered of circumscribing more effectually 
the State governments, and enlarging the bounds of 
the general government. Some contend, that States 
are sovereign, when, in fact, they are only political 
societies. There is a gradation of power in all socie* 
ties, from the lowest corporation to the highest sover- 
eign. The States never possessed the essential rightd 
of sovereignty. These were always vested in Con- 



900 SECRET PROCEEDINGS' 

giess. Their voting as States, in CcMigress, is no evi- 
dence of sovereignty. The State of Maryland voted 
by counties; did this make die counties sovereign? 
'The Stales, at present, are only great corporations, 
having the power of making by-laws, and these are 
effectual only if they are not contradictory to the gen- 
eral confederation. The States ought to be jdaced 
nnder the control of the general government ; at least 
as much so as they formerly were under the King and 
ftitish Parliament. The arguments, I observe, have 
taken a different turn, and I hope may tend to con- 
vince all of the necessity of a strong, enei^etic govern- 
ment, which would equally tend to give energy to, 
and protect the State governments. What was the 
origin of the military establishments of Europe ? It 
was the jealousy which one state or kingdom enter- 
"tained of another. This jealeiisy was ever productive 
of evil. In Rome, the patricians were often obliged 
to excite a foreign war, to divert the attention of the 
jdebeians from encroaching on the senatorial rights. 
In England and France, perhaps, this jealousy may 
give energy to their governments, and ccmtribute* to 
their existence. But a state of danger is like a state 
of war, and it unites the various parts of the govern- 
ment to exertion. May not our distractions, however, 
invite danger from abroad ? If the power is not im- 
mediately derived 6om the people, in proportion to 
their numbers, we may make a paper confederacy, but 
that wiQ be all. We know the effects of the old con- 
federation, and without a general government this will 
be like the former. 

Mr* Hamilton, The course of my experience in 
human affairs, might, perhaps, restrain me from saying 
much on this subject. I shall, however, give birth to 



OF THE FEDERAL C0NVE19TI0N. 201 

some of the observations I have made during the course 
of this debate. The gentleman from Maryland has 
been at great pains to establish positions which lure not 
denied. Many of them, as drawn from the best vnitJht0 
on government, are become almost self-evident princir 
pies. But I doubt the propriety of his application of 
those principles in the present discussion. He deduces 
from them the necessity, that states/ entering into a 
confederacy, must retain the equality of votes. Thia 
position cannot be correcta Pacts plainly contradict 
it. The Parliament erf Great Britain asserted a sur 
premacy over the whole empire, and the celebrated 
Judge Blackstone labors for the legality of it, although 
Inany psurts were not reinresented. This parliamentary 
power we opposed, as contrary to our colonial righte. 
With that exception, throughout that whole empire, it 
is submitted to. May not the smaller and greater 
States so modify their respective rights, as to establish 
the general interest of the whole, without adhering to 
the right of equality ? Strict representation is not ob* 
seiwd in any of the State governments. The Senate 
c^ New York are chosen by persons of certai^^ quali- 
fications, to the exclusion of others. The question^ 
after all, is, is it our interest, in modifying this general 
government, to sacrifice individual rights to the pres- 
ervation of the rights of an artificial being, called 
Slates? There can be no truer principle than thiS| 
that every individual of the community at large has 
an equal right to the protection of government. If^ 
therefore, three States contain a majority of the inhab* 
itants of An>erica, ought they to be governed by a 
minority ? Would the inhabitants of the great States 
ever submit to this ? If the smaller States maintain 
this princij|}ey through a love of power, win not tho 



302 S£CRET PROCEEDINGS 

larger, from the same motiveiS, be equally tenacious to 
preserve their power? They are to surrender their 
rights, for what ? For the preservation of an artificial 
being. We propose a free government. Can it be so, 
if partial distinctions are maintained ? I agree with 
the gentleman from Delaw:are, that, if the State gov- 
ernments are to act in the general government, it 
affords the strongest reason for exclusion. In the 
State of New York, five counties form a majority of 
representatives, and yet the government is in no dan- 
ger, because the laws have a general operation. The 
small States ejtaggerate their danger, and on this 
ground contend for an undue proportion of power. 
But their danger is increased, if the larger States will 
not submit to it. Where will they form new alliances 
for their support? Will they do this with foreign 
powers? Foreigners are jealous of our increasing 
greatness, find would rejoice in our distractions. Those 
who have had opportunities of conversing with foreign- 
ers respecting sovereigns in Europe, have discovered 
in them an anxiety for the preservation of our demo- 
cratic governments, probably for no other reason but 
to keep us weak. Unless your government is respect- 
able, foreigners will invade your rights ; and to main- 
tain tranquillity, it must be respectable. Even to ob- 
serve neutrality, you must have a strong^govemment. 
I confess, our present situation is critical. We have 
just finished a war, which has established our inde- 
pendency, and loaded us with a heavy debt. We 
have still every motive to unite for our conunon de- 
fence. Our people are disposed to have a good gov- 
ernment, but this disposition may not always prevail. 
It is difficult to amend confederations ; it has been at- 
tempted in vain, and it is perhaps a miracle that we 



^^' , 



OF THE FEDERAL CONVENTION. 203 

are now met. We must, therefore, improve the op- 
portunity, and render the present system as perfect as 
possible. Their good sense, and above all, the neees* 
sity of their affairs, will induce the people to adopt it. 

Mr. Pierce, The great difficulty in Congress arose 
from the mode of voting. Members spok6 on the floor 
as State advocates, and were biassed by local advan- 
tages. What is federal ? No more than a compact 
between states ; and the one heretofore formed is in- 
sufficient. We are now met to remedy its defects, 
and our difficulties are great-, but not, I hope, insur- 
mountable. State distinctions must be sacrificed so 
far as the general government shall render it necesr 
sary, — without, however, destroying them. altogether.^ 
Although I am here as a representative from a small 
State, I consider myself as a citizen of the United 
States, whose gener§,l interest I will always support. 

Mr. Gerry. It appears to me, that the States 
never were independent; they had only corporate 
rights. Confederations are a mongrel kind of govern- 
ment, and the world does not afford a precedent to go 
by. Aristocracy is the worst kind of government, and 
I would sooner submit to a monarchy. We must have 
a system that will execute itself. 

The question was then put on Mr. Lansing's motion, 
and lost ; four ayes ,* six noes ; one State divided. 

Ciuestion on the clause ; six ayes ; four noes ; and 
one State divided. 

Judge Ellsworth. I move, that the consideration 
of the eighth resolve be postponed. Carried; nine 
ayes ; two noes. 

I now move the following amendment to the re- 
solve : '^ that in the second branch each State have an 
equal vote." I confess, that the effect of this motion 



204 SECRET PROCEEDINGS. 

is, to make the general government partly federal and 
partly national. This will secure tranquillity, and still 
nake it efficient ; and it will meet the objections of 
the larger States. In taxes they will have a propor- 
tional weight in the first branch of the general legis- 
lature. If the great States refuse this plan, we will 
be for ever separated. Even in the executive the 
larger States have ever had great influence. The 
provinces of Holland ever had it. If all the States 
are to exist, they must necessarily have an equal vpt9 
in the general government. Small communities, wbAtl 
associating with greater, can only be supported b]rtm 
equality of votes. I have always found in my read- 
ing and experience, that in all societies the goveni<»rs 
are ever gradually rising into power. 

The lafge States, although they may not have a 
common interest for combination, yet they may be 
partially attached to each other for niutual support and 
advancement. This can. be more easily eflected than 
the union of the remaining small States to check it ; 
and ought we not to regard antecedent plighted faith 
to the confederation already entered into, and by the 
terms of it declared to be perpetual ? .And it is not yet 
obvious to me, that the States will depart from this 
ground. When in the hour of common danger we 
united as equals, shall it now be urged by some, that 
we must depart from this principle when the danger 
is over ? Will the world say that this is just ? We 
then associated as free and independent States, and 
were well satisfied. To perpetuate that independence, 
I wish to establish a national legislature, executive, 
and judiciary, for under these we shall, I doubt not, 
preserve peace and harmony ; nor should I be surpris- 
ed (although we made the general government tb^ 



OF THE FEDERAL CONVENTION. 206 

most perfect in our opinion), that it should hereafter 
require amendment. But at present this is as far as I 
possibly can go. If this convention only chalk out 
lines of a good government we shall do well. 

Mr, Baldwin. It appears to be agreed, that the 
government we should adopt ought to be energetic 
and formidable ; yet I would guard against the danger 
of becoming too formidable. The second brsdhch ought 
not to be elected as the first. Suppose we take the 
example of the constitution of Massachusetts, as it is 
commended for its goodness. There -the first branch 
represents the people, and the second its property'. 

Mr, Madison. I would always exclude inconsist- 
ent principles in framing a system of government. 
The difficulty of getting its defects amended are great 
and sometimes insurmountable. The Virginia State 
government was the first which was made, and though: 
its defects are evident to every person, we cannot geti 
it amended. The Dutch have made four several at-- 
tempts to amend their system without success. The^ 
few alterations made in it were by tumult and faction, 
and for the worse. If there was real danger, I would 
give the smaller States the defensive weapons. But 
there is none from that quarter. The great danger to 
our general government is, the great southern and north- 
ern interests of the continent being opposed to each 
other. Look to the votes in Congress, and most of 
them stand divided by the geography of the country, 
not according to the size of the States. 

Suppose the first branch granted naoney, may not 
the second branch, from State views, counteract the 
first? In Congress, the single State of Delaware pre- 
vented an embargo, at the time that all the other 
States thought it absolutely necessary for the support 
18 • 



206 SECRET PROCEEDINGS 

of the army. Other powers, and those very essential, 
besides the legislative, will be given to the second 
branch? — such as the negativing all State laws. I 
would compromise on this question, if I could do it 
on correct principles, but otherwise not ; if the old 
fabric of the confederation must be the ground-work 
of the new, we must fail. 

Adjourfled till to-morrow morning. 

SATURPAY, JUNE 30th, 1787. 

Met pursuant to adjournment. Present, eleven 
States. 

Judge Brearley moved, that the president be di- 
rected to write to the executive of New Hampshire, 
requesting the attendance of its delegates. 

Negatived ; two ayes ; five noes ; one State divided. 

The discussion of yesterday resumed. 

Mr, Wilson. The question now before us is of 
80 much consequence, that I -cannot give it a silent 
vote. Gentlemen have said, that, if this amendment 
is not agreed to, a separation to the north of Pennsyl- 
vania may be the consequence. This neither staggers 
me in my sentiments or my duty. If a minority 
should refuse their assent to the new plan of a general 
government, and* if they will have their own- will, and 
without it, separate the Union, let it be done ; but we 
shall stand supported by stronger and better principles. 
The opposition to this plan is as tweaty-two is to 
ninety, in the general scale, — not quite a fourth. part 
of the Union. Shall three fourths of the Union sur- 
render their rights for the support of that artificial be- 
ing, called State interest ? If we must join issue, I am 
willing. I cannot consent that one fourth shall con- 
trol the power of three fourths. 



OF THE FEDERAL CONVENTION. 207 

If the motion is adopted, seven States will control 
the whole, and the lesser seven compose twenty-four 
out of ninety. One third must control two thirds ; 
twenty-four overrule sixty-six. For whom do we 
form a constitution, for men, or for imaginary beings 
called States, a mere metaphysical distinction? Will 
a regard to State rights justify the sacrifice of the 
rights of men ? If we proceed on any other foundation 
than the last, our building will neither be solid noi 
lasting. Weight and numbers is the only true princi- 
ple ; every other is local, confined, or imaginary. Much 
has been said of the danger of the three larger States 
combining together to give rise to monarchy, or an 
aristocracy. Let the probability of this combination 
be explained, and it will be found that a rivalship 
rather than a confederacy will exist among them. Is 
there a single point in which this interest coincides. 
Supposing that the executive should be selected from 
one of the larger States, can the other two be gratifi- 
ed ? Will not this be a source of jealousy amongst 
them, and will they not separately court the interest 
of the smaller States, to counteract the views of a 
favorite rival ? How can an aristocracy arise from this 
combination more than amongst the smaller States? 
On the contrary, the present claims of the smaller 
States lead directly to the establishment of an aris- 
tocracy, which is the government of the few over the 
many, and the Connecticut proposal removes only a 
small part of the objection. There are only two kinds 
of bad governments, — the one which does too much, 
and therefore oppressive, and the other which does too 
little, and therefore weak. Congress- partakes of the 
latter, and the motion will leave us in the same situa- 
tion, and as much fettered as ever we were. The 



208 S£CRET PROCEEDINGS 

people see its weakness, and would be mortified in 
seeing our inability to correct it. 

The gentleman from Georgia has his doubts how to 
vote on this question, and wishes some qualification 
of it to be made. I admit, there ought to be some dif- 
ference as to the numbers in the second branch ; . and, 
perhaps, there are other distinctions which could, with 
propriety, be introduced ; such, for example, as the 
qualifications of the elected, &c. However, if there 
are leading principles in the system which we adopt, 
much may be done in the detail. We all aim at giv- 
ing the general government more energy. The State, 
governments are necessary and valuable. No liberty 
can be obtained without them. On this question de- 
pends the essential rights of the general government 
and of the people. 

Judge EUsworth. I have the greatest respect for 
the gentleman who spoke last. I respect his abilities, 
although I differ from him on many points. He as^ 
serts, that the general government must depend on 
the eqiial suffrage of the people. But will not this 
put it in the power of few States to control the rest ? 
It is a novel thing in politics, that the few control the 
many. In the British government, the few, as a 
guard, have an equal share in the government. The 
House of Lords, although few in number, and sitting 
in their own right, have an equal share in their legis- 
lature. They cannot give away the property of the 
community, but they can prevent the Commons from 
being too lavish in their gifts. Where is, or was a 
confederation ever formed, where equality of voices 
was not a fundamental principle ? Mankind are apt to 
go from one extreme to another, and because we have 
found defects in the confederation, mu9t we therefore 



OF THE FEDERAL CONVENTION. 209 

pull down the whole fabric, foundation and all, in 
order to erect a new building totally different from it, 
without retaining any of its materials ? What are its 
defects ? It is said, equality of votes has embarrassed 
- us ; but how ? Would the real evils of our situation 
have been cured, had not this been the case ? Would 
the proposed amendment in the Virginia plan, as to 
representation, have relieved us ? I fancy not. Rhode 
Island has been often quoted as a small State, and by 
its refusal once defeated the grant of the impost. 
Whether she was right in so doing is not the ques- 
tion ; but was it a federal requisition ? And if it was 
not, she did not, in this instance, defeat a federal 
measure. 

If the larger States seek security, they have it fully 
in the first branch of the general government. But 
can we turn the tables, and say that the lesser States 
are equally secure ? In commercial regulations they 
will unite. If policy should require free ports, they 
would be found at Boston, Philadelphia, and Alexan- 
dria. In the disposition of lucrative oflScies they would 
unite. But I ask no surrender of any of the rights of 
the great States, nor do I plead duress in the makers 
of the old confederation, nor suppose they soothed the 
danger, in order to resume their rights when the dan- 
ger was over. No,* small States must possess the 
powejr of self-defence or be ruined. Will any one say 
there is no diversity of interests in th^ States ? And 
if there is, should not those interests be guarded and 
secured? But if there is hone, then the large States 
have nothing to apprehend from an equality of rights. 
And let it be remembered, that these remarks are not 
the result of partial or local views. The State I rep- 
18* 



210 . S£CRET PROCEEDINGS 

resent is respectable, cuid in importance holds a middle 
rank. 

Mr. Madison. Notwithstanding the admirable and 
close reasoning of the gentleman who spoke last, I am 
not yet convinced, that my former remarks are not 
1 well founded. I apprehend he is mistaken as to the 
fact, on which he builds one of his arguments. He 
supposes, that equality of votes is the principle on 
which all confederacies are formed. That of Lycia, 
so justly applauded by the celebrated Montesquieu, was 
different. He also appeals to our good faith for the 
observance of the confederacy. We know we have 
found one inadequate to the purposes for which it was 
made. Why then adhere to a system which is proved 
to be so remarkably defective ? I have impeached a 
number of States for the infraction of the confedera- 
tion, and I have not even spared my own State, nor 
can I justly spare his. Did not Connecticut refuse her 
compliance to a federal requisition ? Has she paid, for 
the two last years, any money into the continental 
treasury ? And does this look like government, or the 
observance of a solemn compact ? Experience shows, 
that the confederation is radically defective ,• and we 
must, in a new national government, guard against 
those defects. Although the large States in the first 
branch have a weight proportionate to their population, 
yet, as the smaller States^have an equal vote in the 
second branch, they will be able to control, and leave 
the larger without any essential benefit. As peculiar 
powers are intended to be granted to the second branch, 
such as the negativing State laws,^&c., unless the 
larger States have a proportionate weight in the repre- 
sentation, they cannot be more secure. 

Judge Ellsworth. My State has always been 



OF THE FEDERAL CONVENTION. * 211 

Strictly federal ; and I can with confidence ap|>eal to 
your Excellency [the President] for the truth of it, 
during the war. The muster-rolls will show, that she 
had more troops in th^ field than even, the State of 
Virginia. We strained every nerve to raise them; 
and we neither spared money nor exertions to complete 
our quotas. This extraordinary exertion has greatly 
distressed and impoverished us, and it has accumulated 
our State debts* We feel the eflects of it even to this 
day. But we defy any gentleman to show, that we 
ever refused a federal requisition. We are constantly 
exerting ourselves to draw money from the pockets of 
our citizens, as fast as it comes in ; and it is the ardent 
wish of the State to strengthen the federal govern- 
ment. If she has proved delinquent through inability 
only, it is not more than others have been, without 
the same excuse. 

Mr, Sherman. I acknowledge there have been 
failures in complying with the federal requisition. 
Many States have be'en defective, and the object of 
our convention is to amend these defects. . 

Colonel Davie, I have great objection to the Vir- 
ginia plan, as to the manner the second branch is to be 
formed. It is impracticable. The number may, in 
time, amount to two or three hundred. This body is 
too large for the purposes for which we intend to con- 
stitute it. I shall vote for the amendment. Some 
intend a compromise. This has been hinted by a 
member from Pennsylvania ; but it still has its diffi- 
culties. The members will have their local prejudices. 
The preservation of the State societies must be the 
object of the general government. It has been as- 
serted, that we were one in war, and one in peace. 
Such we were as States ; but every treaty must be the 



I 



i 



212 SECRET PROCEEDINGS 

■ • 

law of the land, as it fiffects individuals. The forma- 
tion of the second branch, as it is intended, by tha mo- 
tion, is also objectionable. Wo are going the same 
round with the old confederation. No plan yet pre- 
sents sufficient checks to a tumultuary assembly ; and 
there is none, therefore, which yet satisfies me. 

Mr, Wilson. On the present motion, it was not 
proper to propose another plan. I think the second 
branch ought not to be numerous. I will propose an 
expedient. Let there be one member for every one 
hundred thousand souls, and the smallest States not 
less than one member each. This would give about 
twenty-six members. I make this proposal, not be- 
cause I belong to a large State, but in order to pull 
down a rotten house, and lay a foundation for a new 
building. To give additional weight to an old build- 
ing, is to hasten its min. 

Governor Franklin. The smaller States, by thit 
motion, would have the power of giving away the 
money of the greater States. There ought to be some 
difference between the first and second branches. 
Many expedients have been proposed, and I am sorry 
to remark, without effect. A joiner, when he wants 
to fit two boards, takes off with his plane the uneven 
parts from each side, and thus they fit. Let us do the 
same ; we are all met to do something. 

I shall propose an expedient. Let the Senate be 
elected by the States equally ; in all acts of sovereignty 
and authority, let the votes be equally taken,- the 
same in the appointment of all officers, and salaries ; 
but in passing of laws, each State shall have a right 
of suffrage in proportion to the sums they respectively 
contribute. Amongst merchants, where a ship has 
many owners, her destinatfon is determined in that 



OF THE "FEDERAL CONVENTION. 213 

■K " * .^•■':' 

proportion. I have been one of the ministers to Prance 

from this country, during the war, and we should have 

been very glad, if they would have permitted iis a 

vote in the distribution of the money to carry on the 

war. 

Mr. Martin. Mr. Wilson's motion or plan would 
amount to nearly the same kind of inequality. 

Mr. King. The Connecticut motion contains all 
the vices of the old confederation. It supposes an im- 
aginary evil, — the slavery of State governments. And 
should this convention adopt the motion, our business 
here is at an. end. 

Captain Dayton. Declamation has been substi- 
tuted for argument. Have gentlemen shown, or must 
we believe it because it is said, that one of the evils 
of the old confederation was imequal representation ? 
We, as distinct societies, entered into the compact. 
Will you now undermine, the thirteen pillars that sup- 
port it ? 

Mr. Martin. If we cannot confederate on just 
principles, I will never confederate in any other maa^ 
ner. 

Mr. Madison. 1 will not answer for supporting 
chimerical objects ; but has experience evinced any 
good in the old confederation? I know it never can 
answer, and I have therefore made use of bold language 
against it. I do assert, that a national Senate, elected 
and paid by the people, will have no more efficiency 
than Congress ; for the States will usurp the general 
government. I mean, however, to preserve the State 
rights with the same care as I would trials by jury ; 
and I am willing to go as far as my honorable col- 
league. 

Mr. Bedford. That all the States at present are 



214 SfeCRET PROCEEDINGS 

'equally sovereign and independent, has been asserted 
from every quarter of this House. Our deliberations 
here are a confii-mation of the position ; and I may add 
to it, that each of them act from interested, and many 
from ambitious motives.- Look at the votes which 
have been given on the floor of this House, and it will 
be found that their numbers, wealth, and local views, 
have actuated their determinations ; and that the larger 
States proceed as if our eyes were already perfectly 
blinded. Impartiality, with them, is already out of 
the question. The reported plan is their political 
creed, and they support it, right or wrong. Even the 
diminutive State of Georgia has an eye to her future 
wealth and greatness. South Carolina, pufied up with 
the possession of her wealth and negroes, and North 
Carolina, are all, from different views, united with the 
great States. And these latter, although it is said 
they can never, from interested views, form a coalition, 
we find closely united in one scheme of interest and 
ambition, notwithstanding they endeavour to amuse us 
with the purity of their principles, and the rectitude 
of their intentions, in asserting, that the general gov- 
ernment must be drawn from an equal representation 
of the people. Pretences to support ambition, are 
never wanting. Their cry is. Where is the danger ? 
and they insist, that, although the powers of the gen- 
eral government will be increased, yet it will be for 
the good of the whole ; and, although the three great 
States form nearly a majority of the people of America, 
they never will hurt or injure tlie lesser States. I do 
not. Gentlemen, trust you. If you possess the power, 
the abuse of it could not be checked ; and what then 
would prevent your exercising it to our destruction ? 
You gravely allege, that ,there is no danger of combi- 



OF THE FEDERAL CONVENTION. 216 

nation, and triumphantly ask, how could combination^ 
be eflfected? "The larger States," you say, "all 
differ in productions and commerce; and experience 
shows, that, instead of combinations, they would be 
rivals, and counteract the views of one another." 
This, I repeat, is language calculated only to. amuse 
us. Yes, Sir, the larger States will be rivals, but not 
against each other; they will be rivals against the 
rest of the States. But it is urged, that such a gov- 
ernment would suit the people, and that its principles 
are equitable and just. How often has this argument 
been refuted, when applied to a federal government. 
The small States never can agree to the Virginia plan ; 
and why then is it still urged ? But it is said, that it 
is not expected that the State governments will ap- 
prove the proposed system, and that this House must 
directly carry it to the people for their approbation ! 
Is it come to this, then, that the sword must decide 
this controversy, and that the horrors of war must be 
added to the rest of our misfortunes ? But what have 
the people already said? ."We 'find the confederation 
defective. Go, and give additional powers to the con- 
federation ; give to it the imposts, regulation of trade, 
power to collect the taxes, and the means to discharge 
our foreign and domestic debts." Can we not, then, as 
their delegates, agree upon these points ? As their 
ambassadors, can we not clearly grant those powers ? 
Why then, when we are met, must entire, distinct, and 
new grounds be taken, and a government, of which 
the people had no idea, be instituted ? And are we to 
be told, if we wont agree to it, it is the last moment 
of our deliberations ? I say, it is indeed the last mo- 
ment, if we do agree to this assumption of power. 
The States will never again be entrapped into a 



, 216 SECRET PROCEEDINGS 

J. measure like this. The people will say, the smaU 

States would confederate, and grant further powers to 
Congress ; but you, the large States, would not. 
Then the fault will be yours, and all the nations of 
the earth will justify us. But what is to become of 

j;\ our public debts, if we dissolve the Union ? Where 

«V» is your plighted faith ? Will you crush the smaller 

States, or must they be left unmolested ? Sooner than 
be ruined, there are foreign powers who will take us 
by the hand. I say not this to threaten or intimidate, 

■^ but that we should reflect seriously before we act. If 

we once leave this floor, and solemnly renounce your 
new project, what will be the consequence ? You will 
annihilate your federal government,* and ruin must 
stare you in the face. Let us then do what is in our 
power, — amend and enlarge the coi^ederation, but 
not alter the federal system. The people expect 

t this, and no more. We all agree in the necessity of a 

more efficient government ; and cannot this be done ? 
Although my State is small, I know and respect its 

f rights, as much, at least, as those who have the honor 

to represent any of the larger States. 

Judge Ellsworth. I am asked by my honorable 
friend from Massachusetts, whether by entering into a 
national government, I will not equally participate in 
national security ? I confess I should ; but I want do- 
mestic happiness, as well as general security. A gen- 
eral government will never grant me this, as it cannot 
know my wants or relieve my distress. My State is 
only as one out of thirteen. Can they, the general 
government, gratify my wishes? My happiness de- 
pends as much on the existence of my State govern- 
ment, as a new-born infant depends upon its mother 
for nourishment. If this is not an answer, I have no 
other to give. 



r/ 



OF THE FEDERAL CONVENTION. 217 * 

Mr. King, I -am in sentiment with those who 
wish the preservation of State governments ; but the 
general governmjent may be so constituted as to effect 
it. Tjet the constitution we are about forming be Con- 
sidered as a commission under which the general gov- 
ernment shall act, and as such it will be the guardian • 
of the State rights. The rights of Scotland are secure 
from all danger and encroachments, although in the 
Parliament she has a small representation. May not 
this be done in our general government ? Since! am 
up, I am concerned for what fell from the gentleman 
from Delaware, — '<Take a foreign power by the 
hand " ! I am sorry he mentioned it, and I hope he 
is able to excuse it to himself on the score of passion. 
Whatever may be my distress, I never will court a. 
foreign power to assist in relieving myself from it. ^ 

Adjourned till Monday next. 

MONDAY, JULY 2d, 1787. 

Met pursuant to adjournment. Present, eleveit 
States. 

The question was then put on Mr. Ellsworth's mo-^ 
tion ; five ayes ; five noes ; one State divided. So 
the question, as to the amendment, was lost. 

Mr. Pinckney. As a professional man, I might say, 
that there is no weight in the argument adduced in 
favor of the motion on which we are divided ; but 
candor obliges me to own, that equality of suffrage in 
the States is wrong. Prejudices will prevail, and they 
have an equal weight in the larger as in the smaller 
States. There is a solid distinction as to interest be- 
tween the southern and northern States. To destroy 
the ill effects thereof, I renew the motion which I 
19 



218 SECRET PROCEEDINGS 

made in the early stage, of this business. [See the 
plan. of it before mentioned.] 

General Pinckney moved for a sel^^ct committee, to 
take into consideration both branches of the legisla- 
ture. 

Mr, Martin. It is again attempted to compromise. 
You must give each State an equal suffrage, or our 
business is at an end. 

Mr. Sherman. It seems we have got to a point, 
that we cannot move one way or the other. Such a 
committee, is necessary to set us right. 

Mr. Morris. The two branches, so equally poised^ 
cannot iiave their due weight. It is confessed, on .all 
hands, that the second branch ought to be a check on 
the first ; for without its having this effect it is per- 
fectly useless. The first branch, originating from the 
people, will ever be subject to precipitancy, change- 
ability, and excess. Experience evinces the truth of 
this remark, without having recourse to reading. This 
can only be checked by ability and virtue in the sec- 
ond branch. On your present system, can you sup- 
pose that one branch will possess it more than the 
others ? The second branch ought to be composed of 
men of great and established property, — an aristoc- 
racy ; men, who from pride will support consistency 
and permanency ; and to make them completely inde- 
pendent they must be chosen for life, or they will be 
a useless body. Such an aristocratic body will keep 
down the turbulency of democracy. But, if you elect 
them for a shorter period, they will be only a name, 
and we had better be without them. Thus constitut- 
ed, I hope they will show us the weight of aristocracy. 

History proves, I admit, that the men of large prop- 
erty will uniformly endeavour to establish tyranny. 



OF THE FBDEHAL CONVENTION. 219 

How then shall we ward oflf this evil ? Give them the 
second branch, and you secure their weight for the 
public good. They become responsible for their con- 
duct, and this lust of power will ever be checked by 
the democratic branch, and thus form a stability in 
your government. But, if we continue changing our 
measures by the breath of democracy, who will con- 
fide in our engagements ? Who will trust us ? Ask 
any person, whether he reposes any oonfidence in the 
government of Congress, or that of the State of Penn- 
sylvania, — he will readily answer you, no. Ask him 
the reason, and he will tell you, it is because he has 
no confidence in their stability. 

You intend also, that the second branch shall be 
incapable of holding any office in the general govern- 
ment. It is a dangerous expedient. They ought to 
hav^ every inducement to be interested in your gov- 
ernment. Deprive them of this right, and they will 
become inattentive to your welfare. The wealthy 
will ever exist ; and you never can be safe unless you 
gratify them as a body, in the pursuit of honor and 
profit. Prevent them by positive institutions, and 
they will proceed in some left-handed way. A son 
may want a place, — you meaii to prevent him from 
promotion. They are not to be pedd for their ser- 
vices ; they will in some way pay themselves ; nor is 
it in your power to prevent it. It is good policy, that 
men of property be collected in one body, to give 
them one common influence in your government. 
Let vacancies be filled up as they happen, by the ex* 
ecutive. Besides, it is of little consequence, on this 
plan^ whether the States are equally represented or 
not. If the State governments have the division of 
many of the loaves and fishes, and the general gov- 



820 SECRET PROCEEDINGS 

ernment few, it cannot exist. This Senate would be 
one of the bawbles of the general government. If you 
choose them for aeven years, whether chosen by the 
people or the States ; whether by equal suffrage, or in 
any other proportion, how will they be a check? 
They will still have local and State prejudices. A 
government by compact is no government at all. You 
may as well go back to your congressional federal 
government, where, in the characters of ambassadors, 
they may form treaties for each State. 

I avow myself the advocate of a strong government ; 
still I admit, that the mfluende of the rich must be 
guarded ,• and a pure democracy is equally oppressive 
to the lower order* of the community. This remark 
is founded on the exj)erience of history. We are a 
commercial people, and as such will be obliged to en- 
gage in European politics. Local government cannot 
apply to the general government These latter re- 
marks I throw out only for the consideration of the 
committee who are to be appointed. 

Governor Randolph. I am in favor of appointing 
a committee; but, considering the warmth exhibited 
in debate on Saturday, I have, I confess, no great 
hopes, that any good* will arise from it. Cannot a 
remedy be devised ? If there is danger to the lesser 
States, from an unequal representation in the second 
branch, may not a check be found in the appointment 
of one executive, by electing him, by an equality of 
State votes ? He must have the right of interposing 
between the two branches, and this might give a rea* 
sonable security to the smaller States. Not one of 
the lesser States can exist by itself; and a dissolution 
of the confederation, I confess, would produce con- 
ventions, as W0ll in the larger as in the smaller States. 



OF THE FEDERAL CONVENTION. 221 

The principle of self-preservation induces me to seek 
for a government that will be stable and secure. 

Mr, Strong moved to refer the seventh resolve to 
the same committee. > 

Mr, Wilson, I do not approve of the motion for a 
committee. I also object to the mode of its appoint- 
ment ; a small committee is the best. 

Mr, Lansing, I shall not oppose tl^e appointment, 
but I expect no good from it. 

Mr. Madison. I have observed, that committees 
only delay business ; and, if you appoint one from 
each State, we i^all have in it the whole force of 
State prejudices. The great difficulty is to conquer 
former opinions. The motion of the gentleman from 
South Carolina can be as well decided here as in com- 
mittee. 

Mr. Gerry. The world at large expect something 
from us. If we do oothing, it appears to me we inust 
have war and confusion, — for the old confederation 
"^^ould be at aa enil Let us see if no concession can 
be made. Accommodation is absolutely necessary, 
and defects4Bay be amended by a future convention. 
The motion was then put to appoint a committee 
on the eighth resolve, and so much of the seventh aa 
was not a^seed to. Carried ; nine States ag^nst two. 
And, by ballot,- the following members were ap* 
pointed : 

Majssachusetts, Mr. Oerry, 
Connecticut, Mr. Ellsworth, 

New York, Mr. Yates, 

New Jersey, Mr. Patterson, 

Peftnsylvania, . Mr. Franklin, 
Delaware, Mr. Bedford, 

19* 



222 SECRET PROCEEDINGS 

Maryland, Mr. Martin, 

Virginia, Mr. Mason, 

North Carolina, Mr. Davie, 

South Carolina, Mr. Rutledge, 

Georgia, Mr. Baldwin. 
The convefition then adjourned to Thursday, the 
6th of July. 

TUESDAY, JULY 3d, 1787. 

The grand committee met. Mr. Gerry was chosen 
chairman. 

The committee proceeded to consider in what man- 
ner they should discharge the business with which 
they were intrusted: By the proceedings in the con- 
vention, they were so equally divided on the impor- 
tant question of representation in the two branches, 
that the idea of a conciliatofy adjustment must have 
been in contemplation of the House in the appointment 
of this committee. But still, how to effect this salu- 
tary purpose was the question. Many of the members, 
impressed with the utility of a general government, 
connected with it the indispensable necessity of a rep- 
resentation from the States according to their ^lumbers 
and wealth ; wiiile others, equally tenacious of the 
rights of the States, would admit of no other represen- 
tation but such as was strictly federal ; or, in other 
words, equality of suffrage. This brought on a dis- 
cussion of the principles on which the House had 
divided, and a lengthy recapitulation of the arguments 
advanced in the House in support of these opposite 
propositions. As I had not openly explained my sen- 
• timents on any former occasion on this question, but 
constantly, in giving my vote, showed my attachment 
to the national government on federal principles, I took 



OF THE FEDERAL CONVENTION. 223 

this occasion to explain my motives. [See a copy of 
my speech hereunto ajonexed.*] 

These remarks gave rise to a motion of Dr. Frank- 
lin, which, after some modification, was agreed to, 
and made the basis of the following report of the com- 
mittee. 

The committee, to whom was referred the eighth 
resolution reported from the <;ommittee of the whole 
House, and so much of the seventh as had not been 
decided on, suhmit the following report : 

That the subsequent propositions be recommended 
to the convention, on condition that both shall be gen- 
erally adopted. 

That, in the first branch of the legislature, each of 
the States now in the Union, be allowed* one member 
for every forty thousand inhabitants, of th^ description 
reported in the seventh resolution of the committee of 
the whole House. That each State, not containing 
that number, shall be allowed one member. 

That all bills for raising or apportioning money, and 
for fixing salaries of the officers of government of the 
United States, shall originate in the first branch of the 
legislature, and shbll not be altered or amended by the 
JBecond branch ,• and that no money shall be drawn 
from the public treasury, but in pursuance of appropri-^ 
ations to be originated in the first branch. 

That, in the second branch of the legislature, each 
State shall have an equal vote. 



* It is matter of regret, that this document cannot be foand. The princi- 
ples it contained are perhaps embodied in the letter from Mr. Tates and Mr. 
Lansing to Governor Georgo Clinton, on their retiring from the conYention. 



224 SECRET PROCEEDINGS 

THURSDAY, JULY 5th, 178^. 

Met pnrBuant to adjourament. 

The report of the committee was read. 

Mr. Gorhomv. I call for an explanation of the prin- 
ciples on which it is grounded. 

Mr. Gerry, the chairman, explained the principles. 

Mr. Martin. The one representation is proposed 
as an expedient for the adoption of the other. 

Mr. Wilson. The conmiittee hare exceeded tbair 
powers. 

Mr. Martin proposed to take the question on €lm 
whole of the report. 

Mr. Wilson. I do not chooso to take a leap in the 
dark. I have a right to call for a division of the qnes* 
tion on each distinct proposition. 

Mr. Madison. I restrain myself from animadvi»(* 
ing on the report, from the respect I bear to the mem* 
bers of the committee. But I most confesSf I aee 
nothing of concession in it. 

The originating money bills is no concession on the 
part of the smaller States; for if seven States in the 
second branch should want such a bill, their interest 
in the first branch will prevail to bring it forward ; it 
is nothing more than a nominsd privilege. 

The second branch, smaD in number and well coifc- 
nected, will ever prevail. The powers of regulating 
trade, imposts, treaties, &c., are more essential to the 
eommunity than raising money, and no provision is 
made for those in the report. We are driven to an 
unhappy dilemma, Two thirds of the inhabitants of 
the Union are to please the remaining one third, by 
sacrificing their essential rights. 

When we satisfy the majority of the people, in se- 



OF THE f EDERAL CONVENTION. 226 

curing their rights, we have nothing to fear j in any 
other way, every thing. The smaller States, I hope, 
will at last see their true and real interest ; and I hope, 
that the warmth of the gentleman from Delaware Will 
never induce him to yield to his own suggestion of 
seeking for foreign aid. 

[At this period, Messrs. Tates and Lansing left the 
convention, and the remainder of the session was em- 
ployed to complete the constitution on the principles 
already adopted. See the revised draft of the consti- 
tution, and the constitution of the United States, with 
aU the ratified amendmentis, as at present existing, in 
the Appendix.] 



JTjP The preceding Notes of the late Chief Justice 
Yates, contained in two hundred and forty-five pages,* 
of two volumes, were copied by me, literally, fjrom the 
original manuscript in his handwriting. The several 
papers referred to did not accompany his notes. 

John Lansino, Jun. 

* The number of pages in the manuscript* 



APPENDIX. 



DOCUMENTS REFERRED TO IN THE PRECEDING NOTES OF 
CHIEF JUSTICE TATES. 



RESOr^TIONS 

OFF£B£I) ST MB. SDMinrD RANDOLPH TO THS COKYSNTlONf 
MAY 29th, 1787. 

1. Resolved^ That the articles of the confederation 
ought to be so corrected and enlarged, as to accomplish 
the objects proposed by their institution, namely, com- 
mon defence, security of liberty, and general welfare. 

2. Resolved, therefore, That the right of sufiirage, 
in the national legislature, ought to be proportioned to 
the quotas of contribution, or to the number of fiee 
inhabitants, as the one or the other may seem best, in 
different cases. 

3. Resolved, That the fiationid legislature ought to 
consist of two branches. 

4. Resolved, That the members of the first branch 
of the national legislature ought to be elected by the 
people of the several States, every for the term 
of to be of the age of years at least ; to re- 
ceive liberal stipends, by which they may be compen- 
sated for the devotion of their time to public service ; 
to be ineligible to any office established by a particular 
State, or under the authority of the United States, 
(except those peculiarly belonging to the functions of 



APPENDIX. 227 

the first branch,) during the term of service and for 
the space of after its expiration ] to be incapable 

of reelection for the space of after the ej^iration 

of their term of service ; and to be subject to recall. 

5. Resolved, That the members of the jsecond 
branch of the national legislature, ought to be elected 
by those of the first, out of a proper number of persons 
nominated by the individual legislatures ; to be of the 
age of years, at least ; to hold their offices for a 
term sufficient to insure their independency ; to receive 
liberal stipends, by which they may be compensated 
for the devotion of their time to this public service ; 
and to be ineligible to any office established by a par- 
ticular State, or under the authority of the United 
States^ (except those peculiarly belonging to the func- 
tions of the second branch,) during the term of ser- 
vice ; and for the space of after the expiration 
thereof. 

6. Resolved, That each branch ought to possess the 
right of originating acts ,' that the national legislature 
ought to be empowered to enjoy the legislative right 
vested in Congress by the confederation ; and more- 
over to legislate in all cases to which the separate 
States are incompetent, or in which the harmony of 
the United States may be interrupted by the exercise 
of individual legislation ; to negative all laws passed 
by the several States, contravening, in the opinion of 
the national legislature, the articles, of union, or any 
treaty subsisting under the authority of the Union; 
and to call forth the force of the Union against any 
member of the Union failing to fulfil its. duty under 
the articles thereof. 

7. Resolved, That a national executive be institut- 
ed, to be chosen by the national legislature for the 



"^*'- APPENDIX. 229 

^^» 10. Resolved, That provision ought to be made for 
*>ne admission of States, lawfully arising within the 
^^mits of the United States, whether from a voluntary 
*:iIiinction of government and territory, or otherwise, 
p^with the consent of a number of voices in the national 
V-.: legislature less than the whole. 
^9 11. Resolved, That a republican government, and 
m the territory of each State, (except in the instance of a 
r voluntary junction of government and territory,) ought 
'J to be guarantied by the United States to each State. 
( 12. Resolved, That provisions ought to be made for 
{ the continuance of a Congress, and their authorities 
and privileges until a given day, after the reform of the 
articles of union shall be adopted, and for the comple- 
tion of all their engagements. 

13. That provision ought to belnade for the amend- 
ment of the articles of union, Whensoever it shall seem 
necessary ; and that the assent of the national legisla- 
ture pught not to be required thereto. 

14. Resolved, That the legislative, executive, and 
judiciary powers within the several States, ought to 
be bound by oath to support the articles of union. 

15. Resolved, that the amendments which shall be 
offered to the confederation by the convention, ought, 
Ht a i»roper time or times, after the approbation of Con- 
gress, to be submitted to an assembly or assemblies of 
representatives, recommended by the several legislar 
tures, to be exiH*essly chosen by the people, to consider 
and decide thereon. 

20 



mmm 



228 APPENDIX. 

term of years, to receive punctually, at stated 

times, a fixed compensation for the services rendered, 
in whiih no increase or diminution shall be made, so 
as to affect the magistracy existing at the time of- the 
increase or diminution ; to be ineligible a second time ; 
and that, besides a general authority to execute the 
national laws, it ought to enjoy the executive rights 
vested in Congress by the confederation. 

8. Resolved, Theit the executive, and a convenient 
number of the natioaal judiciary, ought to compose a 
council of revision, with authority to examine every 
act. of the national legislature before it shalh operate, 
and every act of a particular legislature before a nega- 
tive thereon shall be :final ; and that the dissent of the 
said council shall amount to a rejection, unless the act 
of the national legislature be again passed, or that of a 
particular legislature be again negatived by of 
the members of each branch. 

9. Resolved, That a national judiciary be estab- 
lished to hold their offices during good behaviour, 
and to receive punctually, at stated times, fixed com- 
pensations for their services, in which no increase or 
diminution shall be made, so as to affect the person 
actually in office at the time of such increase or dimi- 
nution. That the jurisdiction of the inferior tribunals 
shall be, to hear and determine, in the first instance, 
and of the supreme tribunal to hear and determine, in 
the dernier resort, all piracies and felonies on the high 
seas ; 'captures from an enemy ; cases in which for- 
eigners, or citizens of other States, applying to such 
jurisdictions, may be interested, or which respect the 
collection of the national revenue ; impeachments of 
any national officer ; and questions which involve the 
national peace or harmony. 



APPENDIX. 

10. Resolvedj That provision ought to be made for 
the admission of States,- lawfully arising within the 
limits of the United States, whether from a voluntary 
junction of government and territory, or otherwise, 
with the consent of a number of voices in the national 
legislature less than the whole. 

11. Resolved, That a republican government, and 
the territory of each State, (eiccept in the instance of a 
voluntary junction of government and territory,) ought 
to be guarantied by the United States to each State. 

12. Resolved^ That provisions ought to be made for 
the continuance of a Congress, and their authorities 
and privileges until a given day, after the reform of the 
articles of union shall be adopted, and for the comple- 
tion of all their engagements. 

13. That provision ought to be^toade for the amend- 
ment of the articles of union, whensoever it shall seem 
necessary ; and that the assent of the national legisla-> 
ture pught not to be required thereto. 

14. Resolvedj That the legislative, executive, and 
judiciary powers within the several States, ought to 
be bound by oath to support the articles of union. 

15. Resolved, that the amendments which shall be 
qfier^d to the confederation by the convention, ought, 
Ht a i»roper time or times, after the approbation of Con- 
gress, to be submitted to an assembly or assemblies of 
representatives, recommended by the several legislar 
tures, to be expressly chosen by the people, to consider 
and decide thereon. 






APPENDIX. 



MR. CHARLES PINCKNEY'S DRAFT OP A FEDERAL. 
GOVERNMENT. 

We the people of the . States of Nov: Hampshire^ 
Massachusetts, Rhode lalaiid and Providence Planta- 
tions, Conn^ticnt, New York, New Jersey, Pennsyl- 
vania, Delaware, Maryland, Yirginia, North Carolina, 
Sonth Carolina, and Georgia, do ordain, declare, and 
establish the foUowing constitution for the govern- 
ment of ourselves and posterity. 

ABTICLE I. 

The style of this government shall be The United 
States of America, and the government shall consist 
of supreme legislative, executive, and judicial powers. 

ARTICLE. II. ' 

The legislative power shall be vested in a Congress, 
to consist of two separate Houses ; one to be called 
the House of Delegates, and the other the Senate, 
who shall meet on the day of in every 

year. 

ARTICLE UI. 

The members of the House of Delegates shall be 
chosen every year by the people of the several 

States; and the qualification of the electors shall be 
the same as those of the electors in the several States 
for their legislature. Each member shall have been a 
citizen of the United States for years ; shall be 

of years of age, and a resident in the State he is 

chosen for until a census of the people shall be 

taken in the manner hereinafter mentioned. The 
House of Delegates shall consist of to be chosen 

from the diflFerent States in the following proportions ; 



APPENDIX. 83^^ 



V 



for New Hampshire, for Massachusetts, 

for Rhode Island, for Connecticut, fiir 

New York, for New Jersey, for Pennsyl- 

vania, for Delaware, for Maryland, 

for Virginia, for North Oarolinji, . for South ' 

Carolina, for Georgia, and the legislature 

shall hereafter regulate the number of delegates by 
the number of inhabitants, according to the pronsions 
hereinafter made, at the rate of one for every 
thousand. All money bills of every kind shall origi- 
nate in the House of Delegates, and shall not be alter- 
ed by the Senate. The House of Delegates shall 
exclusively possess the power of impeachment, and 
shair choose its own oflBicers; and vacancies therein 
shall be supplied by the executive authority of the 
State in the representation from which they shall 
happen. 

ARTICLE IV. 

The Senate shall be elected and chosen by the 
House of Delegates ; which* House, immediately after 
their meeting, shall choose by ballot senators 

from among the citizens and residents of New Hamp- 
shire, from among those of Massachusetts, * 
from among those of Rhode Island, from among 
those of Connecticut, from among those of New 
York, from among those of New Jersey, 
from among those of Pennsylvania, from among 
those of Delaware, from among those of Mary-^ 
land, from among those of Virginia, from 
among those of North Carolina, from among 
those of South Carolina, and from among those 
of Georgia. The senators chosen from New Hamp- 
shire, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, and Connecticut, 



.J** 



B32 APPENDIX 

shall fonn one clasB ; those from New Toik, New Jep- 
iey, PenniylTania, and Delaware, one class; and 
those fiom Maryland, Yii^inia, North Oarolina, South 
Carolina, and Gecnrgia, one class. The House of Del^ 
Agates shall number these classes one, two, and three ; 
and fix the times of their service by lot. The first 
class shall serve for years ; the second for 

years ; and the third for years. As their times 

of service exjAie, the House of Delegates shall fill 
them up by elections for years ; and they shall 

fill all vacancies that arise from death, or resignatioii, 
for the time of service remaining of the meoibers ao 
dying or resigning. Each senator shall be years 

of age at least ; shall have been a citizen of the United 
States four years before his election ; and shall be a 
Resident of the State he is chosen &om. The Senate 
shall choose its own officers. 

AXriOLM v& 

Each State shall prescribe the time and tfiann^l: of 
holding elections by the people for the House of Dd^ 
gates ; and the House of Delegates shall be the judgea 
of the elections, returns, and qualifications of their 
members. 

In each House a majority shall constitute a quorum 
to do business. Freedom of speech and debate in the 
legislature shall not be impeached, or questioned, in 
any {dace out of it ; and the members of both Houses 
shall, in all cases, except for treason, felony, or breach 
of the peace, be free from arrest during their attend^ 
ance on Congress, and in going to and returning from 
it. Both Houses shall keep journals of their proceed* 
ings, and publish them, except on secret occasions $ 
and the yeas and nays may be entered thereoki at the 



APPENDIX. 233 

desire of one of the members present. Neither 

House, without the consent of the other, shall adjourn 
for more than days, nor to any place but where 

they are sitting. 

The members of each House shall not be eligible 
to, or capable of holding any office under the Union, 
during the time for which they have been respectively 
elected, nor the members of the Senate for one year 
after. The members Df each House shall be paid for 
their services by the States which they represent. 
Every bill, which shall have passed the -legislature, 
shall be presented to the President of the United 
States for his revision ; if he approves it he shall sign 
it ; but, if he does not approve it, he shall return it, 
with his objections, to the House it originated in ; 
which House, if two thirds of ^he members present, 
notwithstanding the President's objections, agree to 
pass it, shall send it to the other House, with the 
President's objections ; where, if two thirds of the 
members pces^nt also agree to pass it, the same shaU . 
become a law ; and all bills sent to the president, and 
not returned by him within days, shall be laws,, 

imless the legislature by their adjournment, prevent 
their return ; in which case they shall not be laws. 

ABTICIiE VI. 

The legislature of the United States shall have the 
power to lay and collect taxes, duties, imposts, and 
excises ; 

To. regulate commerce with all nations, and among 
the several States ; 

To borrow money and emit bills of credit ; 

To establish post-offices ; 

To raise armies i . 

20* . . ' 



934 APPENDIX. 

To build and equip fleets ; 

Td pass laws for arming, organizing, and disciplin- 
ing the militia of the Cnited States ; 

To subdue a rebellion in any State, on apjticadoii 
ef its legislltture ; 

IV) coin numey, and regulate the value of all coins^ 
and fix the stemdard of weights and measures ; 

To provide such dock-yards and arsenals, and erect 
such fortifications, as may be necessary for the United 
Slates, and to exercise exclusive jurisdiction theieia ( 

To appoint a treasurer by ballot ; 

To constitute tribunals inferior to the Sujurdme 
Court ; 

To establish post and military roads ; 

To establish and provide for a national university 
at the seat of the government of the United States ; 

To establish uniform rules of naturalization ; 

To provide for the establishment of a seat of goy- 
emment for the United States, not exceeding 
miles square, in which they shall have exclusive juri»^ 
diction ; 

To make rules concerning captures from an enemy ; 

To declare the law and punishment of piracies and 
feloni^ at sea, and of counterfeiting coin, and of all 
ofiences against the laws of nations ; 

To call forth the aid of the militia, to execute the 
biWs 6( ihe Utiioii, Enforce treaties, su]4»^6ite ihsurrec- 
tions, land t^l ibv^icms ; 

And to make all laws for carrying the foreg<tf)^ 
powders into escecUtion. 

The legidature of the United Stat^ shall haVe the 
power to declare th^ puiaishtetet of treason, wtuch 
shall consist only in levying "Wkt hgainlst the United 
States, or any of them, or in adhering to thehrisiiettiSes. 



APPENDIX. 930 

No person shall be convicted of treason but by the tes- 
timony of two witnesses. 

The prop<^ioQ of direct taxation shall be regulated 
by the whole aidnber of inhabitants of every descrip- 
tion ; which number i^all, within years after the 
first meeting of the legislature, and within the term 
of every year after, be taken in the manner to 
be prescribed by the legislature. 

No tax shall be laid on articles exported firom the 
States; nor capitation tax, but in proportion to the 
census before directed. 

All laws regulating commerce shall require the as- 
^nt of two thirds of the members present in eajch 
House. The United States shall not grant any title 
of nobility. The legislature of the United States shall 
pass no law on the subject of religion; nor touching 
or abridging the liberty of the press; nor shall the 
pivilege of the writ of habeas corpus ever be sus- 
pended, except in case of rebellion or invasion. 

All acts made by the legislature of the United 
States, pursuant to this constitution^ and all treaties 
made under the authority of the United States, fihall 
be the i9U|»reme law of the land ; and aU judges diall 
be bound to consider them as such in their decisions 

ABTKLE vn. 

The Senate shall have the sole and exclusive power 
to declare war, and to make treaties, and to appoint 
ambassadors and other ministers to foreign nations, utid 
judges of the Supreme Oourt 

They shall have the exclusive power to regulate the 
mamier of deciding all disputes and controversies now 
subsisting, or which may arise, between the States 
respecting jurisdiction or territory. 



836 APPfiHDIX. 



ABTICLE Tm. 

The ezBcntiye power of the United States diall be 
vested in a President of the United States of America, 
which shall be his style ; and his title diall be his 
Excellency. He shall be elected for yeais, and 

diall be reeligible. 

He shall, firom time to time, give infonnation to the 
l^;idatare of the state of the Uni(»i, and recommend 
to their consideration the measures he may think 
necessary. He shall take care that the laws of the 
United States be duly executed. He shall commis- 
sicm all the officers of the United States ; and, except 
as to ambassadors, other ministers, and judges of the 
Supreme Court, he shall nominate, and with the con- 
sent of the Senate appoint, all oth^ officers of the 
United States. He shall receive public ministers from 
foreign nations ; and may correspond with the execo- 
tive of the different States. He shall have power to 
grant pardons and reprieves, except in impeachments. 
He shall be Commander-in-chief of the army and navy 
of the United States, and of the militia of the several 
States ; and shall receive a compensation which shaU 
not be increased or diminished during his continuance 
in office. At entering on the duties of his office, he 
shall take an oath faithfully to execute the duties of a 
Presideilt of the United States. He shall be removed 
from his office on impeachment by the House of Del- 
egates, and conviction in the Supreme Court, o( trea- 
son, bribery, or corruption. In case of his removal, 
death, resignation, or dissibility, the President of the 
Senate shall exercise the duties of his office until an- 
other President be chosen. And in case of the death 



APPENDIX. 237 

of the President of the Senate, the Speaker of the 
House of Delegates shall do so. 

ABTICL£ IX. 

The legislature of the United States shall have the 
power, and it shall be their duty, to establish such 
courts of law, equity, and admiralty, as shall be 
necessary. 

The judges of the courts shall hold their offices 
during good behaviour ; and receive a compensatioOi 
which shall not be increased or diminished during their 
continuance in office. One of these courts -shall be 
termed the Supreme Coutt, whose jurisdiction shall 
extend to all cases arising under the laws of the United 
States, or affecting ambassadors, other public mihisterSi 
and consuls ; to the trial of impeachment of officers 
of the United States ; to all cases of admiralty 
and maritime jurisdiction. M cases of impeachment^ 
ttflfecting ambassadors ^Ind other public ministers, this 
jurisdiction shall be original ; and in all the other cases 
appellate. 

All criminal officers (except in cases of impeach- 
Ittent) shbll be tried in the State where they shall be 
<^ommitted. The trials shall be open and public, and 
be by jury. , 

ARTICLE X. , 

Immediately after the first census of the people of 
the United States, the House of Delegates shall appor* 
tion the Senate, by electing for each State, out of the 
citizens resident therein, one senator for every 
members such State shall have- in the House of Dele- 
gates. Each State shall be entitled to have at least 
One member in the Senate% 



238 APPENDIX. 



ABTICI.K XL 

No State shall grant letters of marque and reprisal, 
or enter into treaty, or alliance, or confederation ; nor 
grant any title of nobility ; nor, withoat the consent 
of the legislature of the United States^ lay any impost 
on impcNTts ; nor keep troops or ships of war in time of 
peace ,- nor enter into any compacts with other States 
or foreign powers, or emit bills of credit, or make any 
thing but gold, silver, or copper a tender in payiftent 
of debts ; nor engage in war, except for self-defence 
when actusdly invaded, or the danger of invasion is so 
great as not to admit of a delay Until the government 
of the United States Can be informed thereof. And, to 
render these prohibitions effectual, the legislature of 
the United States shall have the power to revise the 
laws of the several States, that may be supposed to 
infringe the powers exclusively delegated by this con- 
stitution to Congress, and to negative and annul such 
as do. 

ARTICLE xn. 

The citizens of each State shall be entitled to all 
the privileges and immunities of citizens in the several 
States. Any person, charged with crimes in any State, 
fleeing from justice to another, shall, on demand of the 
executive of the State from which he fled, be deliv- 
ered up, and removed to the State having jurisdiction 
of the offence. 

« 

ARTICLE XHL 

Full faith shall be given, in each State, to the acts 
of the legislature, and to the records and judicial pro- 
ceedings of the courts and magistrates of every State* 



APPENDIX. 239 



▲BTICLE XIY. 

The legislature shall have. power to admit new 
States into the Union on the same terms with the 
original States ; provided two thirds of the members 
present in both Houses agree. 

ARTICLE XV. 

On the application of the legislature of a State, the 
United States shall protect it against domestic insm> 
rection. 

ABTICLE XVI. 

If two thirds of the legislatures of the States apply 
for the same, the legislature of the United States shall 
call a convention for the purpose of amending the 
constitution; or, should Congress, with the consent 
of two thirds of each House, propose to the States 
amendments, to the same, the agreement of two thirds 
of the legislatures of the States shall be- sufficient to 
make the said amendments parts of the constitution. 

The ratification of the conventions of 

States shall be sufficient for organizing this constitu* 
tion. 



PROPOSITIONS 

OFFERED TO THE CONVENTION BT THE HONOBABLE MR. PAT- 
TERSON, JUNE 15th, 1787. 

1. Resolved, That the articles of confederation 
ought to be so revised, corrected, and enlarged, ais to 
render the federal constitution adequate to the ex- 



240 APPCJNDIX. 

igencies of government, and the preservation of the 
Union. 

9. Iie$olved, That in addition to the powers vested 
in the United States in Congress, by the present ex- 
isting articles of confederation, they be authorized to 
pass acts for raising a revenue, by levying a duty or 
duties on all goods and merchandise of foreign growth 
or manufacture, imported into any part of the United 
States, — by stamps, on paper, vellum, or parchment, 
and by a postage on all letters and packages passing 
through the general post-office, — to be applied to suoll 
federal purposes as they shall deem proper and expedi- 
ent ; to make rules and regulations for the Collection 
thereof; and the same from time to time to alter and 
amend, in such manner as they shall think proper* 
To pass acts for the regulation of trade and commercei 
as well with foreign nations as with each other ; pro^ 
vided, that all punishments, fines, forfeitures, and 
penalties, to be incurred for cpntravening such rules 
and regulations, shall be adjudged, by the common 
law judiciary of the States in which any offence con- 
trary to the true intent and meaning of such rules and 
regulations shall be committed or perpetrated ; with 
liberty of commencing, in the first instance, all siuits 
or prosecutions for that purpose, in. the superior com- 
mon law judiciary of such State ; subject, neverthe- 
less, to an appeal for the correction of all errors, both 
in law and fact, in rendering judgment, to the judi- 
ciary of the United States. 

3. Resolved, That whenever requisitions shall be 
necessary, instead of the present rule, the United 
States in Congress be authorized to make such requi- 
sitions in proportion to the whole number of white, 
and other free citizens and inhabitants of every age, 



APPENDIX. 341 

sex, ai^d condition, including those bound lo servi- 
tude" for a term of years, and three fifths of all other 
persons not comprehended in the foregoing descrip- 
tion, except Indians not paying taxes ; that, if such 
requisitions be not complied with in the time to be 
specified therein, to direct the collection thereof in 
the non-complying States ,• and for that purpose to 
devise and pa$s acts directing and authorizing the 
same ; provided, that none of the powers hereby 
vested in the United States in Congress, shall be ex- 
ercised without the consent of at least States ; 
and in that proportion, if the number of confederated 
States should be hereafter increased or diminished. 

4. Resolved, That the United States in Congress 
be authorized to elect a fedei:al executive to consist of 
persons, to continue in office for the term of 
years ; to receive punctually, at stated times, a 
fixed compensation for the services by them rendered, 
in which no increase or diminution shall be made, so 
as to affect the persons composihg the executive at 
the time of such increase or diminution ; to be paid 
out of the federal treasury ; to be incapable of holding 
any other office or appointment during their term of 
service, and for years thereafter ; to be inejigi- 

ble a second time, and removable, on impeachment 
and conviction for malpractices or neglect of duty, by 
Congress, on application by a vmajdrity of the execu- 
tives of the several States.- That the executive, be- 
sides a general authority to execute the federal acts, 
ought to appoint all federal officers not otherwise pro- 
vided for, and to direct all military operations; pro- 
vided, that none of the perfeons composing the federal 
executive shall, on any occasion, take command of 
21 



242 APPENDIX. 

any troops, so as personally to conduct any military 
enterprise as general, or in any other capacity. 

5. Resolved, That a federal judiciary be establish- 
ed, to consist of a supreme tribunal, the judges of 
which to be appointed by the executive, and to hold 
their offices during good behaviour ; to receive punc- 
toally, at stated times, a fixed compensation for their 
services, in which no increase or diminution shall be 
made, so as to affect the persons actually in t)ffice at 
the time of such increase or diminution. That the 
judiciary, so established-, shall have authority to hear 
and determine, in the first instance, 6n all impeach- 
ments of federal officers ; and, by way of appeal, in 
the dernier resort, in all cases touching the rights and 
privileges of ambassadors; in all cases of captures 
from an enemy ; in all cases of piracies and felonies 
Oil the high seas; in all cases in which foreigners may 
be interested, in the construction of any treaty or 
treaties, or which may. arise on any act or ordinance 
of Congress for the Regulation of trade, or the collec- 
tion of the federal revenue. That none of the judi- 
ciary officers shall, during the time they remain in 
office, be capable of receiving or holding any other 
office or appointment during their term of service, ox 
for thereafter. 

6. Resolved, That the • legislative, executive, and 
judiciary powers within the several States, ought to 
be bound by oath, to support the articles of union. 

7. Resolved, That all acts of the United States in 
Oongross assembled, made by virtue and in pursuance 
of tlio i)owers hereby vested in them, and by the arti- 
cles of the confederation, and all treaties made and 
rutified under the authority of the United States, shall 
bo the supreme law of the respective States, as far as 



APPENDIX. 243 

those acts or. treaties shall relate to the said States, or 
their citizens ; and that the judiciaries of the several 
States shall be bound thereby in their decisions, any- 
thing in the respective laws of the individual States 
to the contrary notwithstanding. 

And if any State, or any body of men in any State, 
shall oppose or prevent the carrying into executior; 
such acts or treaties, the federal executive shall be 
authorized to call forth the powers of the. confederated 
States, or so much thereof as may be necessary, to en- 
force and compel an obedience to such acts, or an 
observance of such treaties. 

8. Resolved, That provision ought to be made for 
the admission of new States into the Union. 

9. Resolved, That provision ought to be made for 
hearing and deciding upon all disputes arising between 
the United States and an individual State, respecting 
territory. ... 

10. Resolved, That the rule f6r naturalization ought 
to be thQ same in every State. 

H. Resolved, Tha4; a citizen of one Staite, com- 
mitting an oflfence in another State, shall be deemed 
guilty of the same offence as if it had been committed 
by a citizen of the State in which the offence was 
committed. 



COLONEL HAMILTON'S PLAN OP GOVERNMENT. 

THE FOLLOWING PAPER WAS READ BY COLONEL HAMILTON, 
AS CONTAINING HIS IDEAS OF A SUITABLE PLAN OF GOV- 
ERNMENT FOR THE UNITED STATES. • 

1. The supreme legislative power of the United 
States of America to, be vested in two distinct bodies 



244 APPENDIX. 

of men, the one to be called the Assembly, the other 
the Senate, who together shall form the legislature of 
the United States, with power to pass all laws what- 
soever, subject to the negative hereafter mentioned. 

2. The Assembly to consist of persons elected by 
the people, to serve for three yeeurs. 

3. The Senate to consist of persons elected to serve 
during good behaviour ; their election to be made by 
electors chosen for that piirpose by the people. In or- 
der to this, the States to be divided into election dis- 
tricts. On the death, removal, or resignation of any 
senator, his place to be filled out of the district from 
which he came. 

4. The supreme executive authority of the United 
States to be vested in * a Governor, to be elected to 
serve during good behaviour. His election to be 
made by electors, chosen by. electors, chosen by the 
people, in the election districts aforesaid. His author- 
ities and fttnctions to be as follows : 

To have a negative upon all laws about to be passed, 
and the execution of all laws passed ; to have the en- 
tire direction of war, when authorized, or begun ; to 
have, with the advice and approbation of the Senate, 
the power of making all treaties ; to have the sole ap- 
pointment of the heads or chief oflScers of the depart^ 
ments of finance, war, and foreign affairs ,* to have the 
nomination of all other oflScers, (ambassadors to foreign 
nations included,) subject to the approbation or rejec- 
tion of the Senate ; to have the power of pardoning all 
offences, except treason, which he shall not pardon, 
^without the approbation of the Senate. 

5. On the death, resignation, or removal of the Gov- 
ernor, his authorities to be exercised by the President 
of the Senate, until a successor be appointed. 



APPENDIX. 245 

6. The Senate to have the sole power of declaring 
war ; the power of advising and approving all treaties ; 
the power of approving or rejecting all appointments 
of officers, except the heads or chiefs of the depart- 
ments of finance, war, and foreign affairs. 

7. The supreme judicial authority of the United 
States to be vested in judges, to hold their offices 
during good behaviour, with adequate and permanent 
salaries. This court to have^ original jurisdiction in 
all causes of capture ; and an appellative jurisdiction in 
all causes in which, the revenues of the general gov- 
ernment, or the citizelis of foreign nations are con- 
cerned. 

8. The legislature of the United States to have 
power to institute courts in ^each State, for the deter- 
mination of all matters of general concern. 

9. The governors, senators, and all officers of the 
Unitfed States to be liable to impeachment for mal and 
corrupt conduct ; and, upon conviction, to be removed 
from office, and -disqualified for holding any place of 
trust or profit. All impeachments to be tried by a 
court to consist of the chief or senior judge of the su- 
perior court of law in each State ; provided, that such 
judge hold his place during good behaviour, and have 
a permanent salary. 

10. All laws of the particular States, contrary to the 
constitution or laws of the United States, tp be utterly 
void. And the better to prevent such laws being 
passed, the Governor or President of each State shall 
be appointed by the general government, and shall 
have a negative upon the laws about to be passed in. 
the State of which he is Governor or President. 

11. No State to have any forces, land or naval ; and 
the militia of all the States to be under the sole and ex- 

21* 



.•: 



246 APPRNDtX. 

elusive direction of the United States: the officers of 
which are to be aj^inted and eommissioned by them. 



STATE OF THE RESOLUTIONS 

SITBMITTED TO THE CONSIDESATION OF THE HOUSE BT THE 
HONOBABLE MB. BANDOLFH, AS ALTEBED, AMENDED, AND 
AGEEED TO, IN COMMITTEE OF THE WHOLE HOUSE. 

1. Resolved, That it is the opinion of this commit- 
tee, that a national government ought to be established, 
consisting of a supreme legislative, judiciary,, and ex- 
ecutive. 

2. Resolvedy that the national legislature ought to 
consist of two branches. 

3. Resolved, That the members of the fibrst branch 
of the national legislature ought to be elected by the 
people of the several States, for the term of three years ; 
to receive fixed stipends, by whioh they may be com- 
pensated for the devotion -of their time to public ser^ 
vice, to be paid out of the national treasury ; to be in- 
eligible to any office established by a particular Stafe, 
or under the authority of the United States, (except 
those peculiarly belonging to the functions of the first 
branch,) during the term of service, and, under the 
national government, for the space of one year after its 
expiration. 

4. Resolved, 'That the members of the second 
branch of the national legislature ought to be chosen 
by the individual legislatures ; to be of the age of 
thirty years, at -least ; to hold their offices for a term 
sufficient to insure their independency, namely, seven 
years; to receive fixed stipends, by which they may 



APPENDIX. 247 

be compensated for the devotion of their time to public 
service, to be paid out of the national treasury ; to be 
ineligible to any office established by a particular State, 
or under the authority of the United States, (except 
those peculiarly belonging to the functions of the sec- 
ond branch,) during the term of service, and, under the 
national government, for the space of one year after its 
expiration. 

5. Resolved, That each br^ch ought to possess the 
right of originating acts. 

6. Resolved, That the national legislature ought to 
be empowered to enjoy the legislative rights vested in 
Congreds by the confederation ; and, moreover, to legis- 
late in all cases to which the separate States are in- 
competent, or in which the harmony of the United 
States may be interrupted, by the exercise of individ- 
ual legislation ; to negative all laws passed by the 
several States contravening, in the opinion of the na- 
tional legislature, the articles of union, or any treaties . 
subsisting und^r the authority of the Union. 

7. Resolved, That the right of suffrage in the first 
branch of the national legislature ought not to be. ac- 
cording to the rule established in the articles of con- 
federation, but according to some equitable ratio of 
representation ; namely, in proportion to the whole 
number of white and other free, citizens and inhabit- 
ants, of every age, sex, and condition, including those 
bound to servitude for a term^ of years, and three fifths 
of all other persons not comprehended in the foregoing* 
description, except Indians not paying taxes in each 
State. 

8. Resolved, That the rights of suffrage in the sec- 
ond branch of the national legislature ought to be ac- 
cording to the rule established for the first. 



248 APPENDIX. 

9. Resolved, That a national executive be insti- 
tuted to consist of a single person ; to be chosen by 
the national legislature, for the term of seven years ; 
with power to carry into execution the national laws ; 
to appoint to offices in cases not otherwise provided 
for ; to be ineligible the second time ; and to be re- 
movable on impeachment, and conviction of mal- 
practice, or neglect of duty ; to receive a fixed stipend, 
by which he may be compensated for the devotion of 
his time to public service, to be paid out of the na- 
tional treasury. - ' 

10. Resolved, That the national executive shall' 
have a right to negative any legislative act, which 
shall not be afterwards passed, unless by two third 
parts of each branch of the national legislature. 

11. Resolved, That a national judiciary be estab- 
lished to consist of one supreme tribunal ,* the judges 
of which to be apix)inj;ed by the second branch of the 
national legislature ; to hold their offices during good 
behaviour ; to receive punctually, at stated times, a 
fixed compensation for their services, in which.no in- 
crease or diminution shall be made, so as to affect the 
persons actually in office at the time of such increase 
or diminution. 

12. Resolved, That the national legislature be em- 
powered to appoint inferior tribunals. 

13. Resolved, That the jurisdiction of the national 
judiciary shall extend to cases which^ respect the col- 
lection of the national revenue ; impeachment of any 
national officer ; and questions which involve the na- 
tional peace and harmony. 

14. Resolved, That provision ought to be made for 
the admission of States, lawfully arising within the 
limits of the United States, whether from a voluntary 



APPENDIX. 249 

junction of government and territory, or otherwise, 
with the consent of a number of voices in the national 
legislature less than the whole. 

15. Resolved, That provision ought to be made for 
the continuance of Congress and their authorities, until 
a given day after the reform of the articles of union 
shall be adopted ; and for the completion of all their 
engagements. 

16. Resolved, That a republican constitution, and 
its existing laws, ought to be guarantied to each State 
by the United States. 

17. Resolved, That provision ought to be made for 
the amendment of the articles of union, whensoever 
it shall seem necessary. 

18. Resolved, That the legislative, executive, and 
judiciary powers, Within the several States, ought to 
be bound, by oath, to support the articles of union. 

19. Resolved, That the amendments which shall be 
offerecL to the confederaticm by the convention, ought, 
at a proper time or times, after the approbation of Con- 
gress, to be submitted to an assembly or assemblies of 
representatives, recommended by the several legisla- 
tures, to be expressly chosen by the people to consider 
and decide thereon. 



RESOLUTIONS OP THE CONVENTION 

REFERRED, ON THE TWENTY-THIRD AND TWENTY-SIXTH OP 
JULY, 1787, TO A COMMITTEE OF DETAIL, (MESSRS. EUT- 
LEDGE, RANDOLPH^ GORHAM, ELLSWORTH, AND WILSON,) 
FOR THE PURPOSE OF REPORTING A CONSTITUTION. 

1. Resolved, That the government of the United 
States ought to consist of a supreme legislative, judi- 
ciary, and executive. 



250 At'PENDIX. 

2. Resolvedj That the legislature consist of two 
branches. 

3. Resolved, That the members of the first branch 
of the legislature ought to be elected by the people of 
the several States, for the term of two years ; io be 
paid out of the public treasury ; to receive an adequate 
compensation for their services ; to be of the age of 
twenty-five years at least ; to be ineligible and inca- 
pable of holding any office under the authority of the 
United States (except those peculiarly belonging -to 
the functions of the first branch) during the term of 
service of the first branch. 

4 Resolved, That the members of the second 
branch of the legislature of the United States ought to 
be chosen by the individual legislatures ; to be of the 
age of thirty years at least ; to hold their offices for 
six years, one third to go out biennially ; to receive a 
compensation for the devotion of their time to the 
pablic service ; to be ineligible to, and incajxable of 
holding any office, under the authority of the United 
States (except those peculiarly belonging to the func- 
tions of the second branch) during the term for which 
they are elected, and for one year thereafter. 

5. Resolved, That each branch ought to possess the 
right of originating acts. 

6. Resolved, That the national legislature ought to 
possess the legislative rights vested in Congress by the 
confederation ; and, moreover, to legislate in -all cases 
for the general interests of the Union, and also in those 
to which the States are separately incompetent, or in 
which the Jiarmony of the United States may be in- 
terrupted by the exercise of individual legislation. 

7. Resolved, That the legislative acts of the United 
States, made by virtue and in pursuance of the arti- 



"^. 



APPENDIX. 261 

cles of union, and all treaties made and ratified under 
the authority of the United States, shall be the su- 
preme law of the respective States, as far as those actl^ 
or treaties shall relate to the said States, or their citi- 
2^ens and inhabitants ; and that the judiciaries of the 
several States shall be bound thereby in their decisr, 
ions, any thing in the respective laws of the individual 
States to the coatrary notwithstanding. ^ 

8. Resolved, That in the original formation of 
the legislature of the United States, the first branch 
thereof shall consist of sixty-five members ; of which 
number. 

New Hampshire shall send three, 



Massachusetts, 


u 


eight,. 


Rhode Islapd, 


ii 


one, 


Connecticut, 


u 


five, 


New York, 


ii 


six,' 


New Jersey, 


ii 


four, 


Pennsylvania, 


il 


eight. 


Delaware, 


ii 


one. 


Maury land, 


it 


six. 


Virginia, 


ii 


v-ten. 


North Carolina, 


ii 


five. 


South Carolina, 


a 


five. 


Georgia, 


ii . 


three. 



But, as the present situation of the States may prob-^ 
ably alter in the number of thoir inhabitants, the legia^ 
lature of the United States shall be authorized, from 
time to time, to apportion the number of representa- 
tives ; and in case any of the States shall hereafter be 
divided, or enlarged by addition of territory, or any 
two or more States united, or any new States created 
within the limits of the United States, the legislature 
of the United States shall possess Authority to regulate 



252 APPENDIX. 

the numbei; of representatives, in any of the foregoing 
cases, upon the principle of their number of inhabit- 
ants, according to the provision hereafter . mentioned| 
namely, — provided always, that representation ought 
to be proportioned according to direct taxation. And, 
in order to ascertain the alteration in the direct tax- 
ation, which may be required from time to time by 
the changes in the relative circumstances of the 
Staties : — 

9. Resolved, That a census be taken » within six 
years from the first meeting of the legislature of 
the United States, and once within the term of 
every ten years afterwards, of all the inhabitants t)f 
the United States, in the manner and according to 
the ratio recommended by Congress in their reso- 
lution of April 18th, 1783 ; and that the legislature 
of the United States shall proportion the direct tax- 
ation accordingly. 

10. Resohed, That all bills for raising or appropri- 
ating money, and for fixing the salaries of the officers 
of the government of the United' States, shall originate 
in the first braneh of the legislature of the United 
States, and shall not be altered or amended by the 
second branch ; and that no money shall be drawn 
from the public treasury, but in pursuance of appro- 
priations to be originated by the first branch. 

11. Resolved, That in the second branch of the 
legislature of the United States, each State shall have 
an equal vote. 

12. Resolved, That a national executive be insti- 
tuted, to consist of a single person ; to be chosen by 
the national legislature for the term of seven years ; to 
be ineligible a second time ; with power to caxry iixtou 
execution the national laws ; to appoint to offices in 



*v 



APP&NDIX. 253 

cases not otherwise provided for ; to be removable oa 
impeachment and conviction of malpractice or neglect 
of duty ,• to receive a fixed compensation for the devo- 
tion of his time to public service, to be paid out of the 
public treasury. 

13. Resolved^ That the national executive shall 
have a right to negative any legislative act, which^ 
shall not be afterwards, passed, unless by two third 
parts of each branch of the national legislature. 

14. Resolvedj^^hdX a national judiciary be estab- 
lished, to consist of one supreme tribimal, the judges . 
of which shall" be appointed by the second branch of 
the national legislature ;. to hold their offices during 
good behaviour ; to receive punctually, at stated times, 
a fixed compensation for their services, in which no 
diminution shall be made, so hs to a£fect the persons 
actually in office at the time of such diminution. 

15. jResolvedj That the national legislature be em- 
powered to appoint inferior tribunals. 

16. Resolved, That the jurisdiction of the national 
judiciary shall extend to cases arising under laws 
passed by the. general legislature; and to such other 
questions as involve the national peace and harmony. 

17. Resolved, That provision ought to be made for 
the admission of States, lawfully arising within the 
limits of the United States, whether from a voluntary 
junction of government and territory, or otherwise, * 
with the consent of a number of voices in the national 
legislature less than the whole. 

18. Resolved, That a republican form of govern- 
ment shall be guarantied to each State ; and that Qach 
State shall be protected against foreign and domestic 
violence. 

19. Besolved, That provision ought to be made for 

22 



264 APPENDIX. 

the amendment of the articles of union, whensoever it 
shall seem necessary. 

20. Resolved, That the legislative, executive, and 
judiciary powers, within the several States, and of the 
national government, ought to be boimd by Dath to 
support the articles of union. 

21. Resolved, That the amendments which shall be 
offered to the confederation by the convention, ought, 
at a proper time or times, after the approbation of Con- 
gress, to be submitted to an assembly or assemblies of 
representatives, recommended by the several legisla- 
tureSj'^to be expressly chosen by the people^^ to consider 
and deeide thereon. 

22. Resolved, That the representation in the second 
branch of the legislature of the United States consist 
of two members from each State, who shall vote per 
capita. 

23. Resolved, That it be an instruction to the com- 
mittee, to whom were referred the proceedings of the 
convention for the establishment of a national govern- 
ment, to receive a clause or clauses, requiring certaiu 
qualifications of property and citizenship, in the United 
States, for the executive, the judiciary, and the mem- 
bers of both branches of the. legislature of the United 
States. 



\ 



DRAFT OP A CONSTITUTION, 

REPORTED BT THE COMMITTEE OF FIVE, AUGUST 6tH, 1787. 

We the people of the States of New Hampshire, 
Massachusetts, Rhode Island and Providence Planta- 
tions, Connecticut, New York, New Jersey, Pennsyl- 
vania, Delaware, Maryland, Yirgiiiiai Jfotih Carolina, 



APPENDIX. 256 

South Carolina, and Georgia, do ordain, declare, and 
establish the following constitution for the government 
of ourselves and our posterity. 

ABTICLE I. 

The style of this government shall be, ''The 
United States of America." 

ABTICLE U. 

The government shall consist of supreme legislative, 
executive, and judicial powers. 

ABTICLE III. * 

The legislative power shall be\ested in a Congress, 
to consist of two separate and distinct bodies of men, 
a House of Representatives- and a Senate ; each of 
which shall, in all cases, have a negative on the other. 
The legislature shall meet on the first Monday in De- 
cember in every year. 

ABTICLE IV. 

Sect, 1. The members of the House of Representa^ 
tives shall be chosen every second year, by the people 
of the several States comprehended within this Union. 
The qualifications of the electors shall be the same, 
from time to time, as those of the electors ill the sev- 
eral States of the most numerous branch of their own 
legislatures. • 

Sect.. 2. Every member of the House of Represen- 
tatives shall be of the age of twenty-five years at least ; 
shall have been a citizen of the United States for at 
least three years before his election ; and shall be, at 
the tiiae ei his election, a resident of the State in 
which ha shall b9 ctionen. 



i X 



248 APPENDIX. 

^ 9. Resolved, That a national executive be insti- 

"•' tuted to consist of a single person ; to be chosen by 

the national legislature, for the term of seven years ; 
with power to carry into execution the national laws ; 
to appoint to offices in cases not otherwise provided 
for ; to be ineligible the second time ; and to be re- 
movable on impeachment, and conviction of mal- 
practice,, or neglect of duty ; to receive a fixed stipend, 
by Ivhich he may be compensated for the devotion of 
his time to public service, to be paid out of the na- 
tional treasury. - ' 

10. Resolved, That the national executive shall 
have a right to negative any legislative act, which 
shall not be afterwards passed, unless by two third 
parts of each branch- of the national legislature. 

11. Resolved, That a national judiciary be estab- 
lished to consist of one supreme tribunal ; the judges 
of which to be appointed by the second branch o( the 

: national legislature ; to hold their offices during good 
behaviour ; to receive punctually, at stated times, a 
fixed compensation for their services, in which no in- 
crease or diminution shall be made, so as to affect the 
persons actually in office at the time of such increase 
or diminution. 

12. Resolved, That the national legislature be em- 
powered to appoint inferior tribunals. 

13. Resolved, That the jurisdiction of the national 
judiciary shall extend to cases which> respect the col- 

. lection of the national revenue ; impeachment of any 
national officer ; and questions which involve the na- 
tional peace and harmony. 

14. Resolved, That provision ought to be made for 
the admission of States, lawfully arising within the 
limits of the United States, whether from a voluntary 



APPENDIX. 249 

junction of government and territory, or otherwise, 
with the consent of a number of voices in the national 
legislature less than the whole. 

15. Resolved, That provision ought to be made for 
the continuance of Congress and their authorities, until 
a given day after the reform of the articles of union 
shall be adopted ; and for the completion of all their 
engagements. 

16. Resolved, That a republican constitution, and 
its existing laws, ought to be guarantied to each State 
by the United States. 

17. Resolved, That provision ought to be made for 
the amendment of the articles of union, whensoever 
it shall seem necessary. 

18. Resolved, That the legislative, executive, and 
judiciary powers. Within the several States, ought to 
be bound, by oath, to support the articles of union. 

19. Resolved, That the amendments which shall be 
offered to the confederation by the convention, ought, 
at a proper time or times, after the approbation of Con- 
gress, to be submitted to an assembly or assemblies of 
representatives, recommended by the several legisla- 
tures, to be expressly chosen by the people to consider 
and decide thereon. 



RESOLUTIONS OP THE CONVENTION 

REFERRED, ON THE TWENTY-THIRD AND TWENTY-SIXTH OF 
JULY, 1787, to A COMMITTEE OF DETAIL, (MESSRS. HUT- 
LEDGE, RANDOLPH^ 60RHAM, ELLSWORTH, AND WILSON,) 
FOR THE PURPOSE OF REPORTING A CONSTITUTION. 

1. Resolved, That the government of the United 
States ought to consist of a supreme legislative, judi- 
ciary, and executive. 



260 APPENDIX. 

2. Resolved, That the legislature consist of two 
branches. 

3. Resolved, That the members of the first branch 
of the legislature ought to be elected by the people of 
the several States, for the term of two years ,• to be 
p^id out of the public treasury ; to receive an adequate 
compensation for their services ; to be of the age of 
twenty-five years at least ; to be ineligible and inca- 
pable of holding any office under the authority of the 
United States (except those peculi^irly belonging to 
the functions of the first branch) during the term of 
service of the first branch. 

4. Resolved, That the members of the second 
branch of the legislature of the United States ought to 
be chosen by the individual legislatures ; to be of the 
age of thirty years at least ,• to hold their offices for 
six years, one third to go out biennially ; to receive a 
compensation for the devotion of. their time to the 
public service; to be ineligible to, and inca[)able of 
holding any office, under the authority of the United 
States (except those peculiarly belonging to the func- 
tions of the second branch) during the term for which 
they are elected, and for one year thereafter. 

5. Resolved^ ThdX each branch ought to possess the 
right of originating acts. 

6. Resolved, That the national legislature ought to 
possess the legislative rights.vested in Congress by the 
confederation ; and, moreover, to legislate in -all cases 
for the general interests of the Union, and also in those 
to which the States are separately incompetent, or in 
which the Jiarmony of the United States may be in- 
terrupted by the exercise of individual legislation. 

7. Resolved, That the legislative acts of the United 
States, made by virtue and in pursuance of the arti'- 



"^- 



APPENDIX. 261 

cles of union, and all treaties made and ratified under 
the aathority of the United States, shall be the su- 
preme law of the respective States, as far as those actd 
or treaties shall relate to the said States, or their citi- 
2^ens and inhabitants ,* and that the judiciaries of the 
several States shall be bound thereby in their decist-, 
ions, any thing in the respective laws of the individual 
States to the coatrary notwithstanding. ^ 

8. Resolved, That in the original formation of 
the legislature of the United States, the first branch 
thereof shall consist of sixty-five members \ of which' 
number, 

New Hampshire shall send three. 



Massachusetts, 


« 


■ eight. 


Rhode Islapd, 


« 


one. 


Connecticut, 


<( 


five. 


New York, 


« 


six,' 


New Jersey, 


« 


four. 


Pennsylvania, 


(( 


eight. 


Delaware, 


« 


one. 


Maryland, 


(( 


six. 


Virginia, 


« 


^ten. 


North Carolina, 


u 


five. 


South Carolina, 


u 


five. 


Georgia, 


tc - 


three. 



But, as the present situation of the States may prob-' 
ably alter in the number of thoir inhabitants, the legis^ 
lature of the United States shall be authorized, from 
time to time, to apportion the number of representa- 
tives ; and in case any of the States shiedl hereafter be 
divided, or enlarged by addition of territory, or any 
two or more States united, or any new States created 
within the limits of the United States, the legislature 
of the United States shall possess jBiuthority to regulate 



:;tjf 



252 APPENDIX. 

the nombei; of representatives, in any of the foregoing 
cases, upon the principle of their number of inhabit- 
ants, according to the provision hereafter .loentioned, 
namely, — provided always, that representation oi^ht 
to be proportioned according to direct taxation. And, 
in order to ascertain the alteration in the direct tax- 
ation, which may be required from time to time by 
the changes in the relative circumstances of the 
States: — 

9. Resolved, That a census be taken « within six 
years from the first meeting of the legislatme of 
the United States, and once within the term of 
every ten years afterwards, of all the inhabitants t)f 
the United States, in the manner and according to 
the ratio recommended by Congress in their reso- 
lution of April 18th, 1783 ; and that the legislature 
of the United States shall proportion the direct tax- 
ation accordingly. 

10. Resolved, That all bills for raising or appropri- 
ating money, and for fixing the salaries of the officers 
of the government of the United' States, shall originate 
in the first braneh of the legislature of the United 
States, and shall not be altered or amended by the 
second branch ; and that no money shall be drawn 
from the public treasury, but in pursuance of appro- 
priations to be originated by the first branch. 

11. Resolved, That in the second branch of the 
legislature of the United States, each State shall have 
an equal vote. 

12. Resolved, That a national executive be insti' 
tuted, to consist of a single person ; to be chosen by 
the national legislature for the term of seven years ; to 
he ineligible a second time ; with power to carry into, 
execution the national laws ; to appoint to offices in 



i 



APP&NDIX. 253 

cases not otherwise provided for ; to be removable oa 
impeachment and conviction of malpractice or neglect 
of duty ,• to receive a fixed compensation for the devo- 
tion of his time to public service, to be paid out of the 
public treasury. 

13. Resolved^ That the national executive shall 
have a right to negative any legislative act, which 
shall not be afterwards, passed, unless by. two third 
parts of each branch of the national legislature. 

14. Resolved^^l^hdX a national judiciary be estab- 
lished, to consist of one supreme tribimal, the judges 
of which shall* be appointed by the second branch of 
the national legislature ;. to hold their offices during 
good behaviour ; to receive punctually, at stated times, 
a fixed compensation for their services, in which no 
diminution shall be made, so hs to a£fect the persons 
actually in office at the time of such diminution. 

15. Resolved^ That the national legislature be em- 
powered to appoint inferior tribunals. 

16. Resolved^ That the jurisdiction of the national 
judiciary shall extend to cases aiising under laws 
passed by the. general legislature; and to such other 
questions as involve the national peace and harmony. 

17. Resolved^ That provision ought to be made for 
the admission of States, lawfully arising within the 
limits of the United States, whether from a voluntary 
junction of government and territory, or otherwise, * 
with the consent of a number of voices in the national 
legislature less than the whole. 

18. Resolved^ That a republican form of govern- 
ment shall be guarantied to each State ; and that Qach 
State shall be protected against foreign and domestic 
violence. 

19. Besolved, That provision ought to be made for 

22 



264 APPENDIX. 

the amendment of the articles of union, whensoever it 
shall seem necessary. 

20. Resolved, That the legislative, executive, and 
judiciary powers, within the several States, and of the 
national government, ought to be boimd by x>ath to 
support the articles of union. 

21. Resolved, That the amendments which shall be 
offered to the confederation by the convention, ought, 
at a proper time or times, after the approbation of Con- 
gress, to be submitted to an assembly or assemblies of 
representatives, recommended by the several legisla- 
turesy^'to be expressly chosen by the people^ to consider 
and decide thereon. 

22. Resolved, That the representation in the second 
branch of the legislature of the United States consist 
of two members from each State, who shall vote per 
capita. 

23. Resolved, That it be an instruction to the com- 
mittee, to whom were referred the proceedings of the 
convention for the establishment of a national govern- 
ment, to receive a clause or clauses, requiring certain 
qualifications of property and citizenship, in the United 
States, for the executive, the judiciary, and the mem- 
bers of both branches of the. legislature of the United 
States. 



DRAFT OP A CONSTITUTION, 

REPORTED BT THE COMMITTEE OF FIVE, AUGUST 6tH, 1787. 

We the people of the States of New Hampshire, 
Massachusetts, Rhode Island and Providence Plantar 
tions, Connecticut, New York, New Jersey, Pennsyl- 
vania, Delaware, Maryland, Virginia, North Carolina, 



:^^ 



APPENDIX. 256 

South Carolina, and Georgia, do ordain, declare, and 
establish the following constitution for the goyemment 
of ourselves and our posterity. 

ABTICLE I. 

The style of this government shall be, ''The 
United States of America." 

ABTICLE U. 

The government shall consist of supreme legislative, 
executive, and judicial powers. 

ABTICLE in. ' 

The legislative power shall be\ested in a Congress, 
to consist of two separate and distinct bodies of men, 
a House of Representatives- and a Senate ; each of 
which shall, in all cases, have a negative on the other. 
The legislature shall meet on the first Monday in De- 
cember in every year. 

ABTICLE IV. 

Sect. 1. The members of the House of Representa^ 
tives shall be chosen every second year, by the people 
of the several States comprehended within this Union. 
The qualifications of th^ electors shall be the same, 
from time to time, as those of the electors ij^ the jtev- 
eral States of the most numerous branch of their own 
legislatures. 

Sect., 2. Every member of the House of Represen- 
tatives shall be of the age of twenty-five years at least ; 
shall have been a citizen of the United States for at 
least three years before his election ; and shall be, at 
the tiin6 of his election, a resident of the State in 
which ha shall bQ cbonen. 



^U 



V 



256 APPENDIX. 

Sect. 3. The House of Representatives shall, at its 
first formation, and until the number of citizens and 
inhabitants shall be taken in the manner hereinafter 
described, consist of sixty-five members; of whom 
three shall be chosen in New Hampshire, eight in 
Massachusetts, one in Rhode Island and Providence 
Plantations, five in Connecticut, six. in New York, 
four in New Jersey, eight in Pennsylvania, one in Del- 
aware, six in Maryland, ten in Virginia, five in North 
Carolina, five in South Carolina, and three in Geoi^ia. 

•Sect. 4. As the proportions of numbers in the dif- 
ferent States will alter from time to time ; as some of 
the States may hereafter be* divided ; as others may- 
be enlarged by addition of territory ; as two or more 
States may be united ; as new States will be erected 
within the limits of the United States, the legislature 
shall, in each of these cases, regulate the number of 
representatives by the number of inhabitants, accord- 
ing to the provisions hereinafter made, at the rjite of 
one for every forty thousand. 

Sect. 5. All bills for raising or appropriating money, 
and for fixing the salaries of the oflScers of government, 
shall originate in the House of Representatives, and 
shall not be altered or amended by the Senate. No 
money shall be drawn from the public treasury but ia 
pursuance of appropriations that shall originate in the 
House of Representatives. 

Sect. 6. The House of Representatives shall have 
the sole power of impeachment. It shall choose its 
Speaker and other officers. 

Sect. 7. Vacancies in the House of Representatives 
shall be supplied by writs of election from the execu- 
tive authority of the State in the representatioa from 
which they shall happen. 



APPENDIX. 267 



ARTICLE y. 

iSect 1. The Senate of the United States shall be 
chosen by the legislatures of the several States. Each 
legislature shall choose two members. Vacancies may 
be supplied by the executive until the next meeting 
of the legislature. Each member shall have one vote. 

Sect, 2. The senators shall be chosen for six years ; 
but, immediately after the first election, they shall be 
divided, by lot, into three classes, as nearly as may be, 
numbered brte, two, and three. The seats of the 
members of the first class shall be vacated at the ex- 
piration of the second year ; of the second class, at the 
expiration of the fourth year ; of the third class, at the 
expiration of the sixth year ; so that a third part of 
the members may be chosen every second year. 

Sect 3. Every member of the Senate shall be of 
the age of thirty years at least ; shall have been a cit- 
izen in the United States for at least four years before 
his election ; and shall be, at the time of bis election, 
a resident of the State from which he shall be chosen. 

Sect 4. The Senate shall choose its own President 
and other ofiicets. 

ARTICLE VI. 

Sect 1. The times and placeid, and the manner of 
holding the elections of the members of each House, 
shall be prescribed by the legislature of each State ; 
but their provisions cohCeming them may, at any 
time, be altered by the legislature of the United 
States. 

Sect. 2. The legislature of the United States shall 
have auth(Mrity to establish such uniform qualifications 
22* 



268 APPENDIX. 

of the members of each House, with regard to prop- 
erty, as to the sdd legislature shall seem expedient. 

iSecL 3. la each House a majority of the members 
shall constitute a quorum to do business ; but a smaller 
number may adjourn from day to day. 

Sect. 4. Each House shall be the judge of the elec- 
tions, returns, and qualifications of its own members. 

Sect. 5. Freedom of speech and debate in the legis- 
lature shall not be impeached or questioned in any 
court or place out of the legislature ; and the members 
of each House shall, in all cases, except treason, felony, 
and breach of the peace, be privileged from arrest dur- 
ing their attendance at Congress, and in going to and 
returning from it. 

Sect. 6. Each House may determine the rules of its 
proceedings ; may punish its members for disorderly 
behaviour ; and may expel a member. 

Sect. 7. The House of Representatives, and the 
Senate, when it shall be acting in a legislative capaci- 
ty, shall keep a journal of their proceedings, and shall, 
from time to time, publish them ,* and the yeas and 
nays of the members of each House, on any question, 
shall, at the desire of one fifth part of the membeis 
present, be entered on the journal. 

Sect. 8. Neither House, without the consent of the 
other, shall adjourn for more than three days, nQr to 
any other place than that at which the two Houses 
are sitting. But this regulation shall not extend to the 
Senate, when it shall exercise the powers mentioned 
in the article. 

Sect. 9. The members of each House shall be inel- 
igible to, and incapable of holding any office under the 
authority of the United States, during the time for 
which they shall respectively be elected; and the 



APPENDIX. 259 

members of the Senate shall be ineligible to, and in- 
capable of holding any such office for one year after- 
wards. 

Sect 10. The members of each House shall receive 
a compensation for their services, to be ascertained and 
paid by the State in which they shall be chosen. 

Sect. 11. The enacting style of the laws of the 
United States shall be, '^Be it enacted, and it is here- 
by enacted, by the House of Representatives, and by 
the Senate of the United States, in Congress as- 
sembled." 

Sect, 12. Each House shall possess the right of 
originating bills, except in the cases before mentioned. 

Sect. 13. Every bill, which shall have passed the 
House of Representatives and the Senate, shall, before 
it becomes a law, be presented to the President of the 
United States, for his revision. If, upon such revision, 
he approve of it, he shall signify his approbation by 
signing it ; but if, upon such revision, it shall appear 
to him improper for being passed into a law, he shall 
return it, together with his objections against it, to that 
House in which it shall have originated, who shall 
enter the objections at large on their journal, and pro- 
ceed to reconsider the bill ; but if, after such reconsid- 
eration, two thirds of that House shall, notwithstand- 
ing the objections of the President,, agree to pass it, it 
shall, together with his objections, be sent to the other 
House, by which it shall likewise be reconsidered; 
and if approved by two thirds of the other House also, 
it shall become a law. But, in all such cases, the. 
votes of both Houses shall be determined by yeas and 
nays ; and the names of the persons voting for or 
against the bill, shall be entered in the journal of each 
House respectively. If any bill shall not be returned 



k 



260 APPENDIX. 

by the President within seven days after it shall have 
been presented to him, it shall be a law, unless the 
legislature, by their adjournment, prevent its return ; 
in which case, it shall not be a law. 

ARTICLE VII. 

Sect. 1. The legislature of the United States shall 
have the power to lay and collect taxes, duties, im- 
posts, and excises ; 

To regulate commerce with foreign nationsi and 
among the several States ; 

To establish a uniform rule of naturalization through- 
out the United States ; 

To coin money ; 

To regulate the value of foreign coin ; 

To fix the standard of weights and measures ; 

To establish post-offices ; 

To borrow money, and emit bills on the credit of 
the United States ; 

To appoint a treasurer by ballot ; 

To constitute tribunals inferior to the Supreme 
Court ; 

To make rules concerning captures on land and 
water ; 

To declare the law and punishment of piracies and 
felonies committed on the high seas, and the punish- 
ment of counterfeiting the coin of the United States, 
and of offences against the law of nations ; 

To subdue a rebellion in any State, on the applicar 
tion of its legislature ; 

To make war ; 

To raise armies ; 

To build and equip fleets ; 

To call forth the aid of the militia, in order to ex- 



APPENDIX. 261 

eeutar the laws of the Union ; enforce treaties, suppress 
insurrections, and repel invasions ; and 

To make all laws that shall be necessary and proper 
for carrying into execution the foregoing powers, and 
all other powers vested, by this constitution, in the 
government of the United States, or in any depart- 
ment or officer thereof. 

Sect 2. Treason against the United States shall 
consist only in levying war against the United States, 
or any of them ; and in adhering to the enemies of 
the United States, or any of them. The legislature 
of the United States shall have power to declare the 
punishment of treason. No person shall be convicted 
of treason, unless on the testimony of two witnesses. 
No attainder of treason, shall work corruption of blood, 
nor forfeiture, except during the life of the person 
attainted. 

Sect. 3. The proportions of direct taxation sTiall be 
regulated by the whole number of white and other 
free citis^ns and inhabitants of every age, sex, and 
condition, including those bound to servitude for a 
term of years, and three fifths of all other persons not 
comprehended in the foregoing description (except In- 
dians not paying taxes) ; which number shall within 
six years after the first meeting of the legislature, and 
within the term of every ten years afterwards, be 
taken in such manner as the said legislature shall 
direct. 

Sect 4. No tax or duty shall be laid by the legis- 
lature on articles exported from any State ; nor on the 
migration or importation of such persons as the several 
States shall think proper to admit; nor shall such 
migration or importation be prohibited. 

Sect 6. No capitation tax shall be laid, unless ia 



APPENDIX. 

proportion to the census herein before directed to be 
taken. 

Se(^, 6. No navigation act shall be passed without 
the assent of two thirds of the members present in 
each House. 

Sect. 7. The United 3tates shall not grant any title 
of nobility. 

ABTICLE Tin. 

The acts of the legislature of the United States 
made in pursuance of this constitution, and all treaties 
made under the authority of the •United States, shall 
be the supreme law of the several States, and of their 
citizens and inhabitants ; and the judges in the sev- 
eral States shall be bound thereby in their decisions ; 
any thing in the constitution or laws of the several 
States to the contrary notwithstanding. 

ARTICLE IX. 

, Sect 1. The Senate of the United States shall have 
power to make treaties, and to appoint ambassadors, 
and judges of the Supreme Court. 

Sect. 2. In all disputes and controversies now sub- 
sisting, or that may hereafter subsist, between two or 
more States, respecting jurisdiction or territory, the 
Senate shall possess the following powers : Whenever 
the legislature, or the executive authority, or the law- 
ful agent of any State in controversy with another, 
shall, by memorial to the Senate, state the matter in 
question, and apply for a hearing, notice of such me- 
morial and application shall be given, by order of the 
Senate, to the legislature or the executive authority 
of the other State in controversy. The Senate shall 
also assign a day for the appearance of the parties, by 



APPENDIX. 263 

their agents, before that House. The agents shall be 
directed to appoint, by joint consent, commissioners or 
judges to constitute a court for hearing and determin- 
ing the matter in question. But, if the agents cannot 
agree, the Senate shall name three persons out of each 
of the several States ; and from the list of such .per- 
sons each party shall, alternately, strike out one, until 
the number shall be reduced to thirteen ; and from 
that number not less than seven, nor more than nine 
names, as the Senate shall direct, shall, in their pres- 
ence, be drawn out by lot ; and the persons whose 
names shall be so drawn, or any five of them, shall be 
commissioners or judges to hear and finally determine 
the controversy; provided a majority of the judges, 
who shall hear the cause, agree in the determination. 
If either party shall neglect to attend at any d«ty as- 
signed, without showing sufficient reasons for not 
attending, or, being present, shall refuse .to strike, the 
Senate shall proceed to nominate three persons out of 
each State, and the clerk of the Senate shall strike in 
behalf of the party absent or refusing. If any of the 
parties shall refuse to submit to the authority of such 
court, or shall not appear to prosecute or defend their 
claim or cause, the court shall nevertheless proceed to 
pronounce judgment. The judgment shall be final 
and conclusive. The proceedings shall be transmitted 
to the President of the Senate, and shall be lodged 
among the public records for the security of the par- 
ties concerned. Every commissioner shall, before he 
sit in judgment, take an oath, to be administered by 
one of the judges of the Supreme or Superior Court 
of the State .where the cause shall be tried, " well and 
truly to hear and determine the matter in question, 
according to the best of his judgment, without favor, 
affection, or hope of reward." 



864 APPENDIX. 

V 

Sect. 3. AU controversies concerning lands claimed 
under different grants of two or vaxate States, whose 
jurisdictions, as they respect such lands, shall hare 
been decided or adjusted subsequent to such grants, or 
any of them, shall, on application to the Senate, be 
finally determined, as near as may be, in the same 
manner as is before prescribed for deciding controver- 
sies between different States. 

ARTICLE X. 

Sect. 1. The executive power of the United States 
shall be vested in a single person. ' His style shall be, 
" The President of the United States of Ameriea " ; 
and his title shall be, " His Excellency." He shall 
be elected by ballot by the legislature. He shall hold 
his office during the term of seven years ; but shall 
not be elected a second time. 

Sect. 2. He shall, from time to time, give informa- 
tion to the legislature of the state of the Union. He 
may recommend to their consideration such measures 
as he shall judge necessary and expedient. He may 
convene them on extraordinary occasions. In case of 
disagreement between the two Houses, with regard to 
the time of adjournment, he may adjourn them to such 
time as he thinks proper. He shall take care, that the 
laws of the United States be duly and faithfully ex- 
ecuted. He shall commission all the officers of the 
United States ; and shall appoint officers in all cases 
not otherwise provided for by this constitution. He 
shall receive ambassadors, and may correspond with 
the supreme executives of the several States. He 
shall have power to grant reprieves and pardons ; but 
his pardon shall not be pleadable in bar of an impeach- 
ment. He shall be Commander-in-chief of the army 



APPENDIX. 26d 

and navy of the Uoited States, and of the militia of 
the several States* He shall, at stated times, receive 
for his services a compensation, which shall neither 
be increased nor diminished during his continuance in 
office. Before he shall enter on the duties of his de-r 
partment, he shall take the following oath or affirma* 

tion : " I solemnly swear (or affirm), that I 

will faithfully execute the office of President of the 
United States of America." He shall be removed 
from his office on impeachment by the House of Rep- 
resentatives, and conviction in the Supreme Court, of 
treason, bribery, or corruption. In case of his removal 
as aforesaid, death, resignation, or disability to dis- 
charge the powers and duties of his office, the Presi- 
dent of the Senate shall exercise those powers and 
duties until another President of the United States be 
chosen, or until the disability of the President be re- 
moved. 

ABTICLE XI. 

tSect. 1. The judicial power of the United Stated 
shall be vested in one Supreme Court, and in such 
inferior courts as ishall, when necessary, from time to 
time, be constituted by the legislal^ure of the United 
States. 

Sect 3k The jfadges of the Supreme CoarH, and of 
the inferior courts, shall hold their offices during go^ 
behaviour. They shall, at stated times, receive- for 
their services a compensation, which shall not be di- 
minished during their continuance in office. 

Sect. 3. The jurisdiction of the Sui^reme' Court shalt 
extend to all cases arising under laws passed by the 
legislature of the United States ; to all cases affecting^ 
ambassadors, other public ministers, and consuls ; to the 
tiial of impeachments of officers of the United States r 
23 



266 APPENDIX. 

to all cases of admiralty and maritime jurisdiction ; to' 
controversies between two or more States (except such 
as shall regard territory or jurisdiction) ; between a State 
and citizens of another State ; between citizens of dif- 
ferent States; and between a State, or the citizens 
thereof, and foreign states, citizens, and subjects. In 
cases of impeachment, cases affecting ambassadors, 
other public ministers, and consuls, and those in which 
a State shall be party, this jurisdiction shall be original. 
In all the other cases before mentioned, it shall be ap- 
pellate, with such exceptions and under such regula- 
tions as the legislature shall make. The legislature 
may assign any part of the jiurisdiction above mentioned 
(except the trial of the President of the United States), 
in the manner and under the limitations which it shall 
think proper, to such inferior courts as it shall consti- 
tute from time to time. 

Sect. 4. The trial of ail criminal offences, (except 
in cases of impeachments,) shall be in the State where 
they shall be committed ; and shall be by jury. 

Sect 5. Judgment, in cases of impeachment, shall 
not extend farther than to removal from office, and 
disqualification to hold and enjoy any office of honor, 
trust, or profit under the United States. But the party 
convicted shall, nevertheless, be liable and subject to 
indictment, trial, judgment, and punishment, accord- 
ing to law. 

ARTICLE XII. 

No State shall coin money; nor grant letters of 
marque and reprisal ; nor enter into any treaty, alli- 
ance, or confederation ; nor grant any title of nobility. 

ARTICLE XIII. 

No State, without the consent of the legislature of : 



APPENDIX. 267 

the United States, shall emit bills of credit, or make 
any thing but specie a tender in payment of debts ; 
lay impost or duties on imports ; nor keep troops or 
ships of war in time of peace ; nor enter into any agree- 
ment or compact with another State, or with any for- 
eign power ; nor engage in any war, unless it shall be 
actually invaded by enemies, or the danger of invasion 
be so imminent as not to admit of a delay until the 
legislature of the United States can be consulted. 

A|t.TICLE XIY. 

The citizens of each State shall be entitled to all priv- 
ileges and immunities of citizens in the several States. 

ARTICLE XV. 

Any person charged with treason, felony, or high 
misdemeanor, in any State, who shall flee from justice, 
and shall be found in any other State, shall, on demand 
of the executive power of the ' State from which he 
fled, be delivered up and ^removed to the State having 
jurisdiction of the ofience. 

ARTICLE XVI. 

Pull faith shall be given in each State to the acts of 
the legislatures, and to the records and judicial proceed- 
ings of the courts and magisti-ates of every other State. 

ARTICLE XVII. 

New States, lawfully constituted or established with- 
in the limits of the United States, may be admitted by 
the legislature into this government ; but to such ad- 
mission the consent of two thirds of the members pres- 
ent in each House shall be necesis€ury. If a new State 
shall arise within the limits of any of the present States, 



268 APPENDIX. 

the consent of the legislatures of such States shall be 
also necessary to its admission. If the admission be 
consented to, the new States shall be admitted on the 
same terms ^ith the original States. But the legisla- 
ture may make conditions with the new States con«- 
ceming the public debt, which shall be then subsisting. 

ARTICLE XVIII. 

The United States shall guarantee Xq each State a 
republican form of government ; and shall protect each 
State against foreign invasions ; and, on the applica- 
tion of its legislature, against domestic violence: 

ARTICLE XIX. 

On the application of the legislatures of two thirds 
of the States in the Union for an amendment of this 
constitution, the legislature of the United States diall 
call a convention for that purpose. ^ 

ARTICLE XX. 

The members of the legislatures, and the executive 
and judicial officers of the United States, and of the 
several States, shall be bound by oath to support 
this constitution. 

ARTICLE XXI. 

The ratification of the conventions of States 

shall be sufficient for organizing this^ constitution. 

ARTICLE XXIL 

This constitution shall be laid before the United 
States in Congress assembled, for their apjNrobation ; 
and it is the opinion of this convention, that it should 
be afterwards submitted to a convention chosen in each 



APPENDIX. 269 

State, under the recommendatioa of its legislature, in 
order to receive the ratification of such convention. 

ARTICLE XXIII. 

To introduce this government, it is the opinion of 
this convention, that each assenting convention should 
notify its assent and ratification to the United States 
in Congress assembled ; that Congress, after receiving 
the assent and ratifications of the conventions of 
States, should appoint and publish a day, as early as 
may be, and appoint a place for commencing proceed- 
ings under this constitution ; that, after such publica- 
tion, the legislatures of the several States should elect 
members of the Senate, and direct the election of 
members of the House of Representatives ; and that 
the members of the legislature should meet at the 
time and place assigned by Congress, and should, as 
soon as may be after their meeting, choDse the Presi- 
dent of the United States, and proceed to execute this 
constitution. 



CONSTITUTION OP THE UNITED STATES, 

AS AMENDED AND ADOPTED IN CONVENTION, 
SEPTEMBER 17tH, 1787. 

We the people of the United States, in order to form 
a more perfect union, establish justice, insure domestic 
tranquillity, provide for the common defence, promote 
the general welfare, and secure the blessings of liberty 
to ourselves and our posterity, do ordain and establish 
this constitution of the United States of America. 
23* 



270 APPENDIX. 



ARTICLE I. 



Sect. 1. All legislative powers herein granted shall 
be vested in a Congress of the United States, which 
shall consist of a Senate and House of Representatives. 

Sect. 2. The House of Representatives shall be 
composed of members chosen every second year by 
the .people of the several States, and the electors in 
each State shall have the qualifications requisite for 
electors of the most numerous branch of the State 
legislature. 

No person shall be a representative who shall not 
have attained to the age of twenty-five years, and 
been seven years a citizen of the United States, and 
who shall not, when elected, be an inhabitant of that 
State in which he shall be chosen. 

Representatives and direct taxes shall be apportion- 
ed among the several States which may be included 
within this Union, according to their respective nam* 
hers, which shall be determined by adding to the 
whole number of free persons, including those bound 
to servitude for a term of years, and excluding Indians 
not taxed, three fifths of all other persons. The ac- 
tual enumeration shall be made within three years 
after the first meeting of the Congress of the United 
States, and within every subsequent term of ten years, 
in such manner as they shall by law direct. The 
number of representatives shall not exceed one for 
every thirty thousand, but each State shall have at 
least one representative ; and, until such enumeratioa 
shall be made, the State of New Hampshire shall be 
entitled to choose three, Massachusetts eight, Rhode 
Island and Providence Plantations one, Connecticut 
five, New York six, New Jersey four, Pennsylvania 



APPENDIX. 271 

eight, Delaware one, Maryland six, Virginia ten, North 
Carolina five. South Carolina five, and Georgia three. 

When vacancies happen in the representation from 
any State, the executive authority thereof shall issue 
writs of election to fill such vacancies. 

The House of Representatives shall choose their 
Speaker and other officers ; and shall have the sole 
power of impeachment. 

tSect 3. The Senate of the United States shall be 
composed of two senators from each State, chosen by 
the legislature thereof, for six years ; and each senator 
shall have one vote. 

Immediately after they shall be assembled in con-^ 
sequence of the first election, they shall be divided as 
equally as may be into three classes. The seats of 
the senators of the first class shall be vacated at the 
expiration of the second year, of the second class at 
the expiration of the fourth year, and of the third class 
at the expiration of the sixth year ; so that one third 
may be chosen every second year. And, if vacancies 
happen by resignation, or otherwise, during the recess 
of the legislature of any State, the executive theteof 
may make temporary appointments until the next 
meeting of the legislature, which shall then fill such 
vacancies. 

No person shall be a senator who shall not have 
attained to the age of thirty years, and been nine 
years a citizen of the United States, and who shall 
not, when elected, be an inhabitant of that State, for 
which he shall be chosen. 

The Vice-President of the United States, shall be 
President of the Senate, but shall have no vote, unless 
they be equally divided. 

The Senate shall choose their other officers, and 



272 APPENDIX. 

also a president pro temparej in the absence of the 
Yice-President, or when he shall exercise the office of 
President of the United States. 

The Senate shall have the sole power to tiy all 
impeachments. When sitting for that purpose, they 
shall be on oath or affirmation. When the President 
of the United States is tried, the chief justice shall 
preside ; and no person shall be convicted without the 
concurrence of two thirds of the members present. 

Judgment in cases of impeachment shall not extend 
further than to removal from office, and disqualifica- 
tion to hold and enjoy any office of honor, trust, or 
profit under the United States; but the party con- 
victed shall, nevertheless, be liable and subject to in- 
dictment, trial, judgment, and punishment, according 
to law. 

Sect. 4. The times, places, and manner of holding 
elections for senators and representatives, shall be pre- 
scribed in each State by the legislature thereof; but 
the Congress may, at any time, by law, make or alter 
such regulations, except as to the places of choosing 
senators. 

The Congress shall assemble at least once in every 
year- ; and such meeting shall be on the first Monday 
in December, unless they shall by law appoint a dif- 
ferent day. 

Sect 6. Each House shall be the judge of the elec- 
tions, returns, and qualifications of its own members ; 
and a majority of each shall constitute a quorum to do 
business ; but a smaller number may adjourn from 
day to day, and may be authorized to compel the at- 
tendance of absent m<embers, in such manner, and 
under such penalties, as each House may provide. 

Each House may determine the rules of its pro- 



APPENDIX. 273 

ceedings; punish its members for disorderly beha* 
viour, and, with the concurrence of two thirds, expel 
a member. 

Each House shall keep a journal of its proceedings, 
and from time to time publish the same, excepting 
such parts as may in their judgment require secrecy ; 
and the yeas and nays of the members of either House 
on any question shall, at the desire of one fifth of those 
present, be entered on the journals. 

Neither House, during the session of CongresS| 
shall, T^rithout the consent of the other, adjourn for 
more than three days, nor to any other place than that 
in which the two Houses shall be sitting. 

Sect. 6. The senators and representatives shall r^ 
ceive a compensation for their services, to be ascertain* 
ed by law, and paid out of the treasury of the United 
States. They shall ir all cases, except treason, fel- 
ony, and breach of the peace, be privileged from airest 
during their attendance at the session of their respec- 
tive Houses, and in going to and returning from the 
same ; and for any speech or debate in either House^ 
they shall not be questioned in any other place. 

No senator or representative shall, during the time 
for which he was elected, be appointed to any civil 
office under the authority of the United State$, which 
shall have been created, or the emoluments whereof 
Aidll have been increased during such time ; and na 
person holding any office under the United States, 
shalLbe a member of either House during his contio^ 
uance in office. 

Sect 7. All bills for raising revenue shall originate 
in the House of Representatives ; but the Senate may 
propose or concur with amendments as on other bills. 

Every bill which shcdl have passed the House of 



.274 APPENDIX. 

Representatives and the Senate shall, before it become 
a law, be presented to the President of the United 
States. If he approve, he shall sign it ; but if not, he 
shall return it, with his objections, to that House in 
which it shall have originated, who shall enter the 
objections at large on their journal, and proceed to re- 
consider it. If, after such reconsideration, two thirds 
of that House shall agree to pass the bill, it shjedl be 
sent, together with the objections, to the other House, 
by which it shall likewise be reconsidered, and, if ap- 
proved by two thirds of that 'House, it shall become 
a law. But in all such cases, the votes of both Houses 
shall be determined by yeas and nays ; and the names 
of the persons voting for and against the bill, shall be 
entered on the journal of each House respectively. If 
any bill shall not be returned by the President within 
ten days (Sundays excepted) after it shall have been 
presented to him, the same shall be a law, in like 
manner as if he had signed it, unless the Congress, by 
their adjournment, prevent its return, in which case it 
shall not be a law. 

Every order, resolution, or vote to which the con- 
currence of the Senate and House of Representatives 
may be necessary, (except on a question of adjourn- 
ment,) shall be presented to the President of the United 
States; and, before the same shall take effect, shall be 
approved by him, or, being disapproved by him, shall 
be repassed by two thirds of the Senate and House of 
Representatives, according to the rules and limitations 
prescribed in the case of a bill. 

Sect 8. The Congress shall have power, 
To lay and collect taxes, duties, imposts, and ex- 
cises ; to pay the debts and provide for the common 
defence and general welfare of the United States ; but 



APPEJJDIX. *" . 276. 

all duties, imposts, and excises shall be uniform 
throughout the United States. 

To borrow money on the credit of the United. 
States ; 

To regulate commerce with foreign nations, and 
among the several States, and with the Indian tribes ,* 

To establish an uniform rule of naturalization, and 
uniform laws on the subject of bankruptcies through- 
out the United States ; 

To coin money, regulate the value thereof, and of 
foreign coin, and fix the standard of weights and 
measures ; 

To provide for the punishment of counterfeiting the 
securities and current coin of the United States ; 

To establish post-ofSces ai;d post-roads ; 

To promote the progress of science and useful artS| 
by securing, for limited times, to authors and invent- 
ors,^ the exclusive right to their respective writings and 
discoveries ; 

To constitute tribunals inferior to the Supreme 
Court ; 

To define and punish piracies and felonies com- 
mitted on the high seas, and offences against the law 
of nations ,* 

To declare war, grant letters of marque and re- 
prisal, and make rules concerning captures on land or 
water ; 

To raise and support armies ; but no appropriation of 
money to that use shall be for a longer term than two 
years ; 

To provide and maintain a navy ; 

To make rules for the government and regulation 
of the land and naval forces ; 

To provide for calling forth the militia to execute 



276 APPENDIX. 

the laws of the Unioiiy suppress insurrections^ and re- 
pel invasions j 

To provide for organizing, arming, and disciplining 
the militia, and for governing such part of them 9B 
may be employed in the service of the Uxiited States, 
reserving to the States respectively, the appointment 
of the officers, and the authority of training the militia, 
according to the discipline prescribed by Congress ; 

To exercise exclusive legislation in all cases what- 
soever, over such district (not exceeding ten miles 
square) as may, by cession of particular States,, aod 
the acceptance of Congress, become the seai ef gov^i 
eniment of the United States; and to tecidse like 
authority over all places purchased by the Qoaseat o£ 
the legislature of the State in which the sanm shall be, 
for the erection of forts, magazines, arsenals, d€>ck- 
yards, and other needful buildings ; and 

To make all laws which shall be neoessary and 
proper for carrying into execution the foregoing poweni^ 
aad all other powers vested by this eonstituilion in the 
government of the United States, or in any depasli- 
ment or office thereof. 

Set^ 9. The migration or importation ef such par* 
sons as any of the States now existing sball think 
proper to admit, shall not be prohibited hy the Con- 
gress prior to the year one thousand eigkt baiidced aad 
eight ; but a tax or duty may be imposed on such im- 
portation not exceeding ten dollars for each person. 

The privilege of the writ of habeas corpus shall not 
be suspended, unless when, in cases of rebellion oc var 
vasion, the public safety may require it. 

No bill of attainder or ex post facto law shall be 
passed. 

No capitation or other direct tax shall be laid, unless 



APPENDIX. 277 

in proportion to the census or enumeration herein be- 
fore directed to be taken. 

* No tax or duty shall be laid on articles exported 
from any State. No preference shall be given by any 
regulation of commerce or revenue to the ports of one 
State over those of another j nor ghall vessels bound to 
or from one State, be obliged to enter, clear, or pay 
duties in another. 

No money shall be drawn from the treasury, but in 
consequence of appropriations made by la^; and a 
regular statement and account of the receipts and ex- 
penditures of all public money shall be published from 
time to time. 

No title of nobility shall be granted by the United 
States ; and no person holding any office of profit or 
trust under them, shall, without the consent of the 
Congress, accept of any present, emolument, office, or 
title of any kind whatever, from any king, prince, or 
foreign state. 

Sect 10. No State shall enter into any treaty, alli- 
ance, or confederation ; grant letters of marque and 
reprisal ; coin money ; emit bills of credit ,* make any 
thing but gold and silver coin a tender in payment of 
debts ; pass any bill of attainder, ex post facto law, or 
law impairing the obligation of contracts, or grant any 
title of nobility. 

No State shall, without the consent of the Congress, 
lay any imposts or duties on imports or exports, ex- 
cept what may be absolutely necessary for executing 
its inspection laws ; and the net produce of all duties 
and imposts, laid by any State on imports or exports,, 
shall be for the use of the treasury of the United 
States ; and all such laws shall be subject to the re- 
vision and control of the Congress. . No State shall,. 
24 



ere AppEHDix. 

without the consent of Congress, lay any duty <3i loii- 
nage, keep troops or ships of war in time of peace, 
enter into any agreement or compact with another 
State, or with a foreign power, or engage in war, un^ 
less actually invaded, or in such imminent danger as 
will not admit of delay. 

ARTICLE II. 

Sect 1. The executive power shall be vested in a 
President of the United States of America. He shall 
hold his ofSice during the term of four years, and to* 
gether with the Yice-President, chosen for the same 
term, be elected as follows : 

Each State shall appoint, in such manner as the 
legiriature thereof may direct, a number of electors, 
equal to the whole number of senators and representa- 
tives to which the State may be entitled in the Con- 
gress ; but no senator or representative, or person 
holding an office of trust or profit under the United 
States, shall be appointed an elector. 

The electors shall meet in their respective States, 
and vote by ballot for two persons, of whom one at 
least shall not be an inhabitant of the same State with 
themselves. And they shall make la list of all the 
persons voted for, an'd of the number of votes for 
each; which list they shall sign and certify, and 
transmit sealed to the seat of government of the Unit- 
ed States, directed to the President of the Senate. 
The President of the Senate shall, in the presence of 
the Senate and House of Representatives, open all the 
certificates, and the votes shall then be counted. The 
person having the greatest number of votes shall be 
the President, if such number be a majority of the 
whole number of electors appointed ; and, if there be 



A??|iNDIX, 279 

morQ than one who have such majority, and have an 
equal number of votes, then the House of Representa- 
tives shall immediately choose by ballot one of them 
for President ; and, if no person have a majority, then 
from the £ve highest on the list, the said House shall, 
in like manner, chxK>se the President. But in choosing 
the President, the votes shall be taken by States, the 
representation from each State having one vote ; a 
quorum for this purpose shall consist of a member or 
members from two thirds of the States, and a major- 
ity of all the States shall be necessary to a choice. 
In every case, after the choice erf the President, the 
person having the greatest number of votes of the 
electors, shall be the Vice-President. But, if there 
should remain two or more who have equal votes, the 
Senate shall choose from them by ballot, the Vice- 
President. 

The Congress may determine the time of choosing 
the electors, and the day in which they shall give 
their votes ; which day shall be the same throughout 
the United States. 

No person except a natural born citizen, or a citizen 
of the United States at the time of the adoption of 
this constitution, shall be eligible to the office of Presi- 
dent ; neither shall any person be eligible to that office 
who shall not have attained to the s^e of thirty-five 
years, and been fourteen years a resident within the 
United States. 

In case of the removal of the President from office, 
or of his death, resignation, or inability to discharge 
the powers and duties of the said office, the same i^all 
devolve on the Vice-President ; and the Ck)ngress may 
by law provide for the case of removal, deaths resig- 
nation, or inability, both of the President and Vice- 



280 APPENDIX. 

President, declaring what officer shall then act as 
President ; and such officer shall act accordingly, until 
the disability be removed, or a President shall be 
elected. 

The President shall, at stated times, receive for his 
services a compensation, which shall neither be in- 
creased nor diminished during the period for which he 
shall have been elected, and he shall not receive 
within that period any other emolument from the 
United States, or any of them. 

Before he enters on the execution of his office, he 
shall take the following oath or affirmation : 

" I do solemnly swear (or affirm), that I will faith- 
fully execute the office of President of the United 
States, and will, to the best of my ability, preserve, 
protect, and defend the Constitution of the United 
States." 

. Sect 2. The President shall be Commander-in-chief 
of the army and navy of the United States, and of the 
militia of the several States, when called into the ac- 
tual service of the United States. He may require the 
opinion, in writing, of the principal officers in each of 
the executive departments, upon any subject relating 
to the duties of the respective offices. And he shall 
have power to grant reprieves and pardons for offences 
against the United States, except in cases of impeach- 
ment. 

He shall have power, by and with the advice and 
consent of the Senate, to make treaties, provided two 
thirds of the senators present concur ; and he shall 
nominate, and by and with the advice and consent of 
the Senate shall appoint ambassadors, other pubUc 
ministers, and consuls, judges of the Supreme Court, 
and all other officers of the United States, whose ap- 



APPENDIX. 281 

poimtments %ve not herein otherwise provided for, and 
which shall be established by Uw. But the Con- 
gressr ma]r> by law, vest the appoimlment of such in- 
£amr officem aa they think proper, in the President 
alone^ isb the) courts of law, or in the heads of depart- 
ments. 

The President shall have power to fill up all vacan- 
cies that may happen during the recess of the Senate, 
by granting commissions, which shall expire at the 
end of their next session. 

Sect. 3. He shall from time to time give to the Cron- 
gresa iisklbrmation of the state of the Union, and rec- 
ommend to their consideration such measures as he 
shall judge necessary and expedient. He may, on 
extraordinary occai^ons, iconvene both Houses, or 
either of Ihem ,* and in case of disagreement between 
them, with respect to the time of adjournment, he 
may adjourn them to such time as he shall think pro- 
per. He shall receive ambassadors and other public 
ministers. He shall take care, that the laws be faith- 
fully executed ; and shall commission all the officers 
of the United Statea 

Sect. 4 The President, Vice-President, and all civil 
officers of the United States, shall be removed from 
office on impeachment for, and conviction of treasoiif 
bribery, or other high crimes and misdemeanors. 

ARTICLE III. 

Sect. 1. The judicial power of the United States, 
shall be vested in one Supreme Court, and in such 
inferior courts as the Congress may from time to time 
ordain and establish. The judges, both of the su- 
preme and inferior courts, shall hold their offices dur- 
ing good behaviour, and shall, at stated times, receive 
24* 



\ 



282 APPENDIX. 

for their services a compensation, which shall not be 
diminished during their continuance in office. 

Sect. 2. The judicial power shall extend to all 
cases, in law and equity, arising under this constitiir 
tion, the laws of the United States, and treaties made, 
or which shall be made, under their authority ; to all 
cases affecting ambassadors, other public ministeis,and 
consuls J to all cases of admiralty and mariliine juris- 
diction ; to controversies to which the United States 
shall be a party ; to controversies between two or 
more States ; between a State and citizens of another 
State; between citizens of different States; between 
citizens of the same State claiming lands under grants 
of different States, and between a State, or the citi- 
zens thereof, and foreign states, citizens, or subjects. 

In all cases affecting ambassadors, other public min- 
isters, or consuls, and those in which a State shall be 
party, the Supreme Court shall have original jurisdic- 
tion. In all the other cases before mentioned, the 
Supreme Court shall have appellate jurisdiction, both 
as to law and fact, with such exceptions, and under 
such regulations, as the Congre^ shall make. 

The trial of all crimes, except in cases of impeach- 
ment, shall be by jury ; and such trial shall be held 
in the State where the said crimes shall have been 
committed; but when not committed within any 
State, the trial shall be at such place or places as the 
Congress may by law have directed. 

Sect. 3. Treason against the United States, shall 
consist only in levyring war against them, or in adher-^ 
ing to their enemies, giving them aid and comfort. 
No person shall be convicted of treason, unless on the 
testimony of two witnesses to the same overt act, or 
on the confession in open court. 



APPENDIX. 283 

The Congress shall have power to declare the pun- 
ishment of treason ; but no attainder of treason shall 
work corruption of blood, or forfeiture, except during 
the life of the person attainted. 

ARTICLE lY. 

Sect. 1. Pull faith and credit shall be given in each 
State to the public acts, records, and judicial proceed- 
ings of every other State. And the Congress may, by 
general laws, prescribe the manner in which such acts, 
records, and proceedings shall be proved, and the ef- 
fect thereof. 

Sect, 2. The citizens of each State shall be entitled 
to all privileges and immunities of citizens in the sev- 
eral States. 

A person charged in any State with treason, felony, 
or other crime, who shall flee from justice, and be 
found in another State, shall, on demand of the exec- 
utive authority of the State from which he fled, be 
delivered up to be removed to the StatjB having juris- 
diction of the crime. 

No person held to service or labor in one State, un- 
der the laws thereof, escaping into another, shall, in 
consequence of any law or regulation therein, be dis- 
charged from such service or labor, but shall be deliv- 
ered up on claim of the party to whom such service or 
labor may be due. 

Sect. 3. New States may be admitted by the Con- 
gress into this Union ; but no new State shall be 
formed or erected within the jurisdiction of any other 
State ; nor any State be formed by the junction of 
two or more States, or parts of States, without the 
consent of the legislature of the States concerned, as 
well as of the Congress. 



\ 



384 APPENDIX. 

The Congress shall have power to dispose of, and 
make all needful rules and regulations respecting the 
territory or other property belonging to the Uaited 
States; and nothing in this constitution shall be ao 
construed as to prejudice any claims of the United 
States, or of any particular State. 

Sect. 4. The United States shall gmurantee to every 
Stale in this Union a republican form of goremment^ 
and shall protect each of them against iuTasion ; and, 
OB application of the legislature, or of the executire^ 
(when the legislature cannot be convened,) against 
domestic violence. 

ARTICLE V. 

The Congress, whenever two thirds of both Heuses 
shall deem it necessary, shall propose amendments.to 
this constitution ; or, on the application of the leg^a- 
tures of two thirds of the several States, shall call 
a convention for proposing amendments ; which, in 
either case, shall be valid to all intents and purpoaes, 
as part of this constitution, when ratified by the lagie* 
latures of three foiurths of the several States, or by con- 
ventions in three fourths thereof, as the one or the other 
mode of ratification may be proposed by the Congress ; 
provided, that no amendment which may be made 
prior to the year one thousand eight hundred and eight, 
shall in any manner afiect the first and fourth clauses 
in the ninth section of the first article ; and that no 
State, without its consent, shall be deprived of its 
equal suffrage in the Senate. 

ARTICLE VL 

All debts contracted, and engagements entered into, 
before the adoption of this constitution, shall be tm 



APPENDIX. 286 

valid against the United States under this constitution, 
as under the confederation. 

This constitution, and the laws of the United States 
which shall be made in pursuance thereof, and all trea- 
ties made, or which shall be made under the authority 
of the United States, shall be the supreme law of the 
land ; and the judges in every State shall be bound 
thereby ; any thing in the constitution or laws of any 
State to the contrary notwithstanding. 

The senators and representatives before mentioned, 
and the members of the several State legislatures, and 
all executive and judicial officers, both of the United 
States and of the several States, shall be bound by oath 
or affirmation, to support this constitution ; but no re- 
ligious test shall ever be required as a qualification to 
any office of public trust under the United States. 

ARTICLE VII. 

The ratification of the conventions of nine States 
shall be sufficient for the establishment of this consti- 
tution between the States so ratifying the same. 

Done in convention, by the unanimous consent of 
the States present, the- seventeenth day of Sep- 
tember, in the year of our Lord one thousand 
seven hundred and eighty-seven, and of the in- 
dependence of the United States of America, the 
twelfth. In witness whereof, we have hereunto 
subscribed our names. 

GEORGE WASHINGTON, President, 
AND Deputy from Virginia. 

New Hampshire. Massachusetts. 

John Langdon, Nathaniel Gorham, 

Nicholas Oilman. ^ Rufus King. 



386 



APPENDIX. 



Connecticut. 

William Samuel Johnson, 
Roger Sherman. 

New York. 
Alexander Hamilton.. 
New Jerset. 
William Livingston^ 
David Brearley, 
William Patterson, 
Jonathan Dayton. 

Pennsylvania. 
Benjamin Franklin, 
Thomas Mifflin, 
Robert Morris, 
George Olymer, 
Thomas Pitzsimons, 
Jared Ingersoll, 
James Wilson, 
Goaverneur Morris. 

Delaware. 
George Read, 
Gunning Bedford, Jun. 



John Dickinson, 
Richard Bassett^ 
Jacob Broom. 

Maryland. 
James M'Henry, 
Daniel of St. Thos. Jenifer, 
Daniel Carroll. 

Virginia. 
John Blair, 
James Madison, Jun. 

North Carolina. 
William Blount, 
Richard Dobbs Spaight, 
Hugh Williamson. 

South Carolina. 
John Rutledge, 
Charles C. Pinckney, 
Charles Pinckney, 
Pierce Butler^ 

Georgia. 
William Pew„ 
Abraham Baldwin. 



Attest, 



William Jackson, Secretary. 



IN CONVENTION, 

Monday, September ITth, 1787. 

Present, The States of New Hampshire, Massachu- 
setts, Connecticut, Mr. Hamilton from New York, 
New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Delaware, Maryland, Vir- • 
ginia. North Carolina, South Carolina, and Georgia : 

Resolved, That the preceding Constitutloa be. Ui^ 



APPENDIX. 287 

before the United States in Congress assembled, and 
that it is the opinion of this convention, that it should 
afterwards be submitted to a convention of delegates 
chosen in each State by the people thereof, under the 
recommendation of its legislature, for their assent and 
ratification; and that each convention assenting to, 
and ratifying the same, shall give notice thereof to the 
United States in Congress assembled. 

Resolved, That it is the opinion of this convention, 
that, as soon as the conventions of nine States shall 
have ratified this Constitution, the United States in 
Congress assembled should fix a day on which electors 
should be appointed by the States which shall have 
ratified the same, and a day on Which the electors 
should assemble to vote for the President, smd the time 
and place for commencing proceedings under this Con^ 
stitution. That, after such publication, the electors 
should be appointed, and the senators and representa- 
tives elected. That the electors should meet on the 
day fixed for the election of the President, and should 
transmit their votes, certified, signed, sealed, and di- 
rected, as the Constitution requires, to the secretary of 
the United States in Congress assembled ; that the 
senators and representatives should convene at the 
time and place assigned ; that the senators should ap- 
point a President of the Senate, for the sole purpose 
of receiving, opening, and counting the votes for Pres- 
ident ; and that, after he shall be chosen, the Congress, 
together with the President, should, without delay, 
proceed to execute this Constitution. 

By the unanimous order of the convention, 

GEO. WASHINGTON, President. 

William Jackson, Secretary. 



288 APPENDIX. 



IN CONVENTION. 

September 17th, 1787. 
iSiR, 
We have now the honor to sabmit to the consider^ 

* ation of the United States in Congress assembled, that 

constitution which has appeared to us the most ad- 
visable. 

The friends of our country have long seen and de- 
sired, that the power of making war, peace, and trea- 
ties ; that of levying money and regulating commerce, 
and the correspondent executive and judicial authori- 

f ties, should be fully and eflFectually vested in the gen- 

eral government of the Union ; but the impropriety of 
delegating such extensive trusts to one body of men is 
evident. Hence results the necessity of a different 
organization. 

It is obviously impracticable, in the federal govern- 
ment of these States, to secure all rights of indepen- 
dent sovereignty to each, and yet provide for the 
interest and safety of all ; individuals entering into 
society, must give up a share of liberty to preserve the 
rest. The magnitude of the sacrifice must depend as 
well on situation and circumstance as on the object to 
be obtained. It is at all times difficult to draw with 
precision the line between those rights which must be 
surrendered, and those which may be reserved ; and 
on the present occasion this difficulty was increased by 
a difference among the several States as to their situ- 
ation, extent, habits, and particular interests. 

In all cur deliberations on this subject, we kept 
steadily in our view, that which appears to us the 
greatest interest of every true American, the consoli- 
dation of our Union, in which is involved our pros- 



APPENDIX. 289 

perity, felicity, safety, perhaps our national existence. 
This important consideration, seriously and deeidy 
impressed on our minds, led each State in the conven- 
tion to be less rigid on points of inferior magnitude, 
Ihan might have been otherwise expected ; and thus 
the constitution, which we now present, is the result 
of a spirit of amity,' and of that mutual deference and 
concession, which the peculiarity of our political situ- 
ation rendered indispensable. 

That it will meet the full and entire approbation of ' 
every State is not perhaps to be expected ; but each 
will doubtless consider, that, had her interests alone 
been consulted, the consequences might have been 
particularly disagreeable or injurious to others ; that 
it is liable tp as few exceptions as could reasonably 
haye been expected, we hope and believe ; that it may 
promote the lasting welfare of that country so dear to 
us all, and secure her freedom and happiness, is our 
most ardent wish. With great respect, we have the 
honor to be. Sir, your Excellency's most obedient and 
humble servants, 

GEO. WASHING'TON, Presidbnt. 

By unanimous order of the convention. 
His Excellency the President of Congress. 



THE UNITED STATES, IN CONGRESS ASSEMBLED, 

Friday, September 28th, 1787. 

Pbesent, New Hampshire, Massachusetts, Gpnnecti-^ 
cut, New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Dela- 
ware, Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, andl 
Georgia ; and from Maryland, Mr. Ross. 
26 



290 APPENDIX. 

Congress having received the report of. the conven- 
tion lately assembled in Philadelphia ; . • . 

Resolved, unanimousiy, That the said report, with 
the resolutions and letter accompanying the same, be 
transmitted to the several legislatures, in order to sub^ 
mit to a convention of delegates, chosen in each State 
by the people thereof, in conformity to the resolves of 
the convention, made and provided in that case. 

Charles Thompson, Secretary. 



AMENDMENTS 

to the constitution of the united states. 

article i. 

Congress shall make no law respecting an establish- 
ment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise there- 
of ; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the 
press ; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, 
and to petition the government for a redress of griev- 
ances. 

article II. 

A well-regulated militia being necessary to the se- 
curity of a free state, the ^ right of the people to keep 
and bear arms shall not be infringed. 

article III. 

No soldier shall, in time of peace be quartered in 
any house, without the consent of the owner ; nor in 
time of war, but in a manner to be prescribed by law. 

article IV. 

The right of the people 'to be secured in their per- 



APPENDIX. 291 

sons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable 
seeurches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no 
v/arrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, sup- 
ported by oath or affirmation, and particularly describ- 
ing the place to be searched, and the persons or things 
to be seized. 

, ARTICLE y. 

No person shall be held to answer for a capital, or 
otherwise infamous crime, unless on a presentment 
or indictment of a grand jury, except in cases arising 
in the land or naval forces, or in the militia, when in 
actual service, in time of war, or public danger ; nor 
shall any person be subject for the same offence to be 
twice put in jeopardy of life ot limb ; nor shall be 
compelled, in any criminal case, to be witness against 
himself; nor be deprived of life, liberty, or property, 
without due process of law ; nor shall private property 
be taken for public use, without just compensation. 

ARTICLE VI. 

In all criminal prosecutions, the accused shall enjoy 
the right to a speedy and public trial, by an impartial 
jury of the State and district wherein the crime shall 
have been committed ; which district shall have been 
previously ascertained by law, and to be informed of 
the nature and cause of the accusation ; to be con- 
fronted with the witnesses against him ; to have com- 
pulsory process for obtaining witnesses in his favor ; 
and to have the assistance of counsel for his defence. 

ARTICLE VII. 

In suits at common law, where the value in con- 
troversy shall exceed twenty dollars, the right of trial 
by jury shall be preserved ; and no fact tried by a 



292 APPENDIX. 

jury shall be otherwise reexamined in any court of 
the United States, than according to the rules of the 
common law. 

ARTICLE YIII. 

Excessive bail shall not be required ; nor excessive 
fines imposed ; nor cruel and unusual punishments 
inflicted. 

ARTICLE IX. 

The enumeration, in the Constitution, of certain 
rights shall not be construed to deny or disparage 
others, retained by the people. 

ARTICLE X. 

The powers not delegated to the United States by 
the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, 
are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people. 

ARTICLE .XI. 

The judicial power of the United States shall not 
be construed to extend to any suit in law or equity, 
commenced or prosecuted ageiinst one of the United 
States by citizens of another State, or by citizens or 
subjects of any foreign state. 

ARTICLE XII. 

The electors shall meet in- their respective States, 
and vote by ballot for President and Vice-President, 
one of whom at least shall not be an inhabitant of the 
same State with themselves ; they shall name in their 
ballots the person voted for as President, and in dis- 
tinct ballots the person voted for as Vice-President, 
and they shall make distinct lists of all persons voted 
for as President, and of all persons voted for as Vice- 
President, and of the number of votes for each, which 



APPENDIX. 293 

lists they shall sign and certify, and transmit sealed to 
the seat of the government of the United States, direct- 
ed to the President of the Senate ; the President of 
the Senate shall, in the presence of the Senate and 
House of Representatives, open all the certificates, and 
the votes shall then be counted; the person having 
the greatest number of votes for President, shall be 
the President, if such number be a majority of the 
whole number of electors appointed ; and, if no person 
have such majority, then from the persons having the 
highest numbers not exceeding three on the list of 
those voted for as President, the House of Represen- 
tatives shall choose immediately, by ballot, the Presi- 
dent. But in choosing the President, the votes shall 
be taken by States, the representation from each State 
having one vote ; a quorum for this purpose shall con- 
sist of a member or members from two thirds of the 
States, and a majority of all the States shall be neces- 
sary *to a choice. And, if the House of Representa- 
tives shall not choose a President whenever the right 
of choice shall devolve upon them, before the fourth 
day of March next following, then the Vice-President 
shall act as President, as in case of the death or other 
constitutional disability of the President. 

The person having the greatest number of votes as 
Vice-President, shall be the Vice-President, if such 
number be a majority of the whole number of electors 
appointed, and if no person have a majority, then from 
the two highest numbers on the list, the Senate shall 
choose the Vice-President ; a quorum for thp purpose 
shall consist of two thirds of the whole number of 
senators, and a majority of the whole .number shall be 
necessary to a choice. ^ 
26* 



294 APPENDIX. 

But no person constitutionally ineligible to the 
office of President shall be eligible to that of Vice- 
President. 



ADVERTISEMENT, 

Published by the Department of Slate as an Introduction to the Joomal ^ 
the CouTention assembled at Philadelphia, Monday, May 12th, and dis- 
solved Monday, September 17th, 1787. 

The first volume of the late edition of the laws of 
the United States, compileci under the direction of 
the late secretary of state atid attorney-general, con- 
tains a succinct historical review of the successive 
public measures, which led to the present organization 
of the North American Union, from the assembling of 
the Congress of the colonies, on the 5th of September, 
1774, to the adoption of the Constitution of the United 
States, and of the^ subsequent amendments to it, now 
in force. ^ 

The following resolution of the old Congress, adopt- 
ed on the 21st of February, 1787, contains the au- 
thority by which the convention which formed the 
Constitution was convoked : 

" Whereas, there is provision in the articles of con- 
federation and perpetual union, for making alterations 
therein, by the assent of a Congress of the United 
States, and of the legislatures of the several States ; 
and, whereas, experience hath evinced, that there are 
defects in the present confederation, as a mean to rem- 
edy which, several of the States, and particularly the 
State of New York, by express instructions to their 
delegates in Congress, have suggested a convention 
for the purposes expressed in the following resolution.; 
and such convention appearing to be the most prob- 



APPENDIX. 295 

able mean of establishing in these States a firm na- 
tional government, 

" Resolved, That in the opinion of Congress, it is 
expedient, that on the second Monday in May next, a 
convention of delegates, who shall have been appoint- 
ed by the several States, be held at Philadelphia, for 
the sole and express purpose of revising the articles of 
confederation-, and reporting to Congress and the sev- 
eral legislatures, such alterations and provisions there- 
in, as shall, when agreed to in Congress, and confirmed 
by the States, render the. federal constitution adequate 
to the exigencies of government, and the preservation 
of the Union." 

The day appointed by this resolution for the meet- 
ing of the convention was the second Monday in 
May; but the 25th of that month was the first day 
upon which a sufficient number of members appeared 
to constitute a representation of a majority of the 
States. They then elected George Washington their 
President, and proceeded to business. 

On the 29th of May, Mr. Edmund Randolph pre- 
sented to the convention fifteen resolutions, and Mr. 
C. Pinckney laid before them the draft of a federal 
government, which were referred to a committee of 
the whole ; which debated the resolutions, from day 
to day, until the 13th of June, when the committee 
of the whole reported to the convention a series of 
nineteen resolutions, founded upon those which had 
been proposed by Mr. Randolph. 

On the 15th of June, Mr. Patterson submitted to 
the convention his resolutions, which were referred to 
a committee of the whole, to whom were also re- 
committed the resolutions reported by them on the 
13th. 



296 APPENDIX. 

On the 19th of June, the committee of the whole 
reported, that they did not agree to Mr. Patterson's 
propositions, but reported again the resolutions which 
had been reported before. 

The convention never afterwards went into com- 
mittee of the whole ; but, from the 19th of June till 
the 23d of July, were employed in debating the nine- 
teen resolutions reported by the committee of the 
whole on the 13th of June ; some of which were 
occasionally referred to grand committees of One mem- 
ber from each State, or to select committees of five 
members. 

After passing upon the nineteen resolutions, it was 
on the 23d of July resolved, " That the proceedings 
of the convention for the establishment of a national 
government, except what respects the supreme execu- 
tive, be referred to a committee, for the purpose of 
reporting a constitution conformably to the proceedings 
aforesaid." 

This committee, consisting of five members, and 
<^alled in the journal "the committee of detail," was 
appointed on the 24th of July, and with the proceed- 
ings of the convention, the propositions submitted to 
the convention by Mr. Charles Pinckney, on the 29th 
of May, and by Mr. Patterson, on the 15th of June, 
wpre referred to them. 

On the 26th of July, a resolution respecting the ex- 
ecutive, and two others, offered for the consideration 
of the convention, were referred to the committee of 
detail ; and the convention adjourned till Monday, the 
6th of August, when the committee reported a consti- 
tution for the establishment of a national government. 
This draft formed the general text of debate from that 
time till the 8th of September ; many additional reso- 



APPENDIX. 297 

lutions being, in the course of the deliberations, pro- 
posed, and referred to and reported upon by the same 
committee of detail, or other committees of eleven, (a 
member from each State,) or of five. 

On the 8th of September, a committee of five was 
appointed " to revise the style of, and arrange, the arti- 
cles agreed to by the House." 

On the 12th of September, this committee reported 
the constitution as revised and arranged, and the draft 
of a letter to Congress. It was ordered, that printed 
copies of the reported constitution should be furnished 
to the members, and they were 1)rought in the next 
day. 

On the 17th of September, 1787, the convention 
dissolved itself, by an adjournment without day, after 
transmitting the plan of constitution which they had 
prepared to Congress, to be laid before conventions, 
delegated by the people of the several States, for their 
assent and ratification. 

The last act of the convention, was a resolution, that 
their journal and other papers should be deposited with 
their president, to be retained by him, subject to the 
order of the Congress, if ever formed under the consti- 
tution. 

On the 19th of March, 17%, President Washington 
deposited in the department of state three manuscript 
volumes; one containing, in one hundred and fifty- 
three pages, the journal of the federal convention of 
1787 ; one, the journal of the proceedings of the same 
convention, while in committee of the whole, in 
twenty-eight pages ; and one, three pages of lists of 
yeas and nays on various questions debated in the con- 
yention ; and, after an interval of eight blank pages, 
five other pages of like yeas and nays. There were 



298 APPENDIX. 

also two loose sheets and one half sheet of similar yeas 
and nays ; a printed draft of the constitution, as re- 
ported on the 6th of August, 1787, with erasures and 
written interlineations of amendments afterwards adopt- 
ed ; two sheets containing copies of the seiies of reso- 
lutions offered to the convention by Mr. Edmund 
Randolph, in different stages of amendment, as re- 
ported by the committee of the whole; and seven 
other papers of no importance in relation to the {pro- 
ceedings of the convention. 

The volume containing the journal of the conven- 
tion, was in an incomplete state. The journal of 
Friday, September t4th, and a commencement of that 
of Saturday, September 15th, filled three fourths of 
the one hundred and fifty-third page ; then terminated 
abruptly, and were, with the exception of five lines, 
crossed out with a pen. President Madison, to whom 
application for that purpose was made, has furnished, 
from his own minutes, the means of completing the 
journal, as now published. 

The yeas and nays were not inserted in the jour-* 
nals, but were entered partly in a separate volume, and 
partly on loose sheets of paper. They were taken, not 
individually, but by States. Instead of publishing 
them as they appear in the manuscript, they are now 
given immediately after each question upon which 
they were taken. 

General Joseph Bloomfield, executor of David Brear- 
ley, one of the members of the convention, transmitted 
to the department of state several additional papers, 
which are included in this publication. 

The paper purporting to be Colonel Hamilton's plan 
of a constitution, is not noticed in the journals. It 
was not offered by him for discussion, but was read by 



APPENDIX. 299 

him sus part of a speech, observing, that he did not 
mean it as a proposition, but only to give a more cor- 
rect view of his ideas. 

The return of the members in the several States, 
appears to have been an estimate used for the pui:- 
pose of apportioning the number of members to be 
admitted from each of the States to the House of 
Representatives. 

In order to follow with clear understanding the 
course of proceedings of the convention,- particular 
attention is required to the following papers, which, 
except the third, successively formed the general text 
of their debates. 

1. May 29th, 1787. The fifteen resolutions offered 
by Mr. Edmund Randolph to the convention, and 
by them referred to a committee of the whole. 

2. JuQe 13th. Nineteen resolutions reported by this 
committee of the whole, on the 13th, and again on 
the 19th of June, to the convention. 

3. July 26th. Twenty-three resolutions adopted and 
elaborated by the convention, in debate upon the 
above nineteen, reported from the committee of the 
whole ; and on the 23d and 26th of July referred, 
together with the plan of Mr. C. Pinckney, and the 
propositions of Mr. Patterson, to a committee of five, 
to report a draft of a constitution. 

4. August 6th. The draft of a plan of constitution 
reported by this committee to the convention j and 
debated from that time till the 12th of September. 

6. September 13th. Plan of constitution, brought in 
by a committee of revision, appointed on the 8th 
of September, consisting of five members, to revise 
the style and arrange the articles agreed to by the 
convention. 



300 APPENDIX. 

The second and fourth of these papers, are among 
those deposited by President Washington, at the de- 
partment of state. 

The first, fourth, and fifth, are among those trans- 
mitted by General Bloomfieid. 

The third is collected from the proceedings of the 
convention, as they are spread over the journal from 
June 19th to July 26th. 

This paper, together with the plan of Mr. O. Pinck- 
ney, a copy of which has been furnished by him, and 
the propositions of Mr. Patterson, included among the 
papers forwarded by General Bloomfieid, comprise the 
materials, upon which the first draft was made of the 
constitution, as reported by the committee of detaili 
on the 6th of August. 

To the journal, acts, and proceedings of the conven- 
tion, are added in this publication, the subse^juent 
proceedings of the Congress of the confederation, upon 
the constitution, reported as the result of their labors ; 
and the acts of ratification by the conventions of the 
several States of the Union, by virtue of which it 
became the supreme law of the land ,* and also the 
amendments to it, which have been since adopted and 
form a pjirt of the constitution. It was thought, that 
this supplement would be, if not essential, at least 
well adapted to carry into full effect the intentions of 
Congress in directing the publication ,* by presenting 
at one view the rise, progress, and present condition 
of the Constitution of the United States. 

Department of State, October, 1819. 



•* \ 



APPENDIX. 301 



LIST OF THE MEMBEES^ 

OF THE FEDERAL CONVENTION WHICH FORKED THE 

CONSTITUTION OF THE UNITED STATE& 

From Attended. 

N. Hampshire, 1. John LangdoOi , July 23, 1787. 
John Pickering J 

2. Nicholas Gilman, July 23, " 
Benjamin Westj 

Massachusetts, Francis Da^na^ 

Elbrldge Gerry, May 29, " 

3. Nathaniel Gorham, May 28, " 

4. Rufus King, May 25, " 
Caleb Strong, May 28, " 

Rhode Island, [No appointment.] 

Connecticut, 6. Wm. Sam. Johnson, June 2, '' 

6. Roger Sherman, May 30, " 
Oliver Ellsworth, May 29, " 

New York, Robert Yates, May 25, " 

7. Alexander Hamilton, May 25, " 
John Lansing, June 2, " 

New Jersey, . 8. Wm. Livingston, June 6, " 

9. David Brearley, May 26, . " 

William C. Hoa«on, May 26, " 

10. William Pattewon, May 26, " 

John Nielsonf 

« Abraham Clarkj 

11» Jonathan Dayton, June 21, " 

Pennsylvania, 12. Benjamin Franklin, May 28, " 

13. Thomas Mifflin, May 28, " 

14. RoMft Morris, May 26, " 
16. Geoifi Clymer, May 28, " 

16. Thos. Fitasimone, May 26, " 

17. Jared IngersoU, WJ^y 28, " 
26 



302 



APPENDIX. 



From Attaadad. 

Pennsylvania, 18. James Wilson, May 25, 1787. 

19. Gouverneur Morris, May 25, " 

Delaware, 20. George Read, May 25, " 

21. Gunning Bedford, Jr. May 28, " 

22. John Dickinson, May 28, " 

23. Richard Bassett, May 25, " 
24 Jacob Broom, May 25, " 

Maryland, 25. James M'Henry, May 29, " 

26. Daniel of St. Thomas 

Jenifer, June 

27. Daniel Carroll, July 
John Francis Mercer, Aug. 
Luther Martin, June 

Virginia, 28. George Washington, May 26, 

Patrick Henry, (declined.) 
Edmund Randolph, May 25, 

29. John Blair, 

30. James Madison, Jr. 
George Mason, 
George Wythe, 
James M'Ourg, (in the 

room of P. Henry) May 26, 

N. Carolina, Richard Caswell, (resigned.) 

Alexander Martin, May 26, 

William R. Davie, May 25, 

31. Wm. Blount, (in the 

room of R. Caswell) June 20, 
Willie Jones, (declined.) 

32. Richard D. Spaight, May 25, 

33. Hugh Williamson, (in 
the room of W. Jones,) May 26, 

S. Carolina, 34. John Rutledge, May 26, 

* 36. Charles C. Pinckney, May 26, 



2, 
9, 
6, 
% 



May 26, 
May 26, 
May 26, 
May 26, 



u 



^ 





APPENDIX. 


303 


From 




Attended. 


S. Carolina, 


36. Charles Pinckney, 


May 25, 1787. 




37. Pierce Butler, 


May 26, " 


Georgia, 


38. William Few, 


May 26, " 




39. Abraham Baldwin, 


June 11, " 




William Pierce, 


May 31, « 



George Walfon, 

William Houston, June 1, ** 

Nathaniel Pendleton. 

Those with numbers before their names signed 

the Constitution, - - - - 39 

Those in italics never attended, - - 10 

Members who attended, but did not sign the 

Constitution, ----- 16 



66 



LETTER 

from the honorable robert yates, and the honorable 
john lansing, jun., esquires, to the governor of 
new york, containing their reasons for not sub- 
scribing to the federal constitution. 

Sib, 

We do ourselves the honor to advise your Excel- 
lency, that, in pursuance of concurrent resolutions of 
the honorable Senate and Assembly, we have, together 
with Mr. Hamilton, attended the convention, appointed 
for revising the articles of confederation, and reporting 
amendments to the same. 

It is with the sincerest concern we observe, that, in 
the prosecution of the important objects of our mission, 



304 APP£^DiX. 

we have been reduced to the disagreeable alternative 
of either exceeding the powers delegated to us, and 
giving our assent to measures which we conceive de- 
structive to the political happiness of the citizens of 
the United States, or opposing our opinions to that of 
a body of respectable men, to whom those citizens had 
given the most unequivocal proofs of confidence. 
Thus circumstanced, under these impressions, to have 
hesitated would have been to be culpable ,* we, there- 
fore, gave the principles of the constitution, which has 
received the sanction of a majority of the convention, 
our decided and unreserved dissent ; but we must 
candidly confess, that we should have been equally 
opposed to any system, however modified, which had 
in object the consolidation of the United States into 
one government. 

We beg leave briefly to state some cogent reasons 
which, among . others, influenced us to decide against 
a consolidation of the States. These are reducible 
into two heads. 

1st. The limited and well-defined powers under 
which we acted, and which could not, on any possible ^ 
construction, embrace an idea of such magnitude, as 
to assent to a general constitution, in subversion of 
that of the State. 

2d. A conviction of the impracticability of establish- 
ing a general government, pervading every part of the 
United States, and extending essential benefits to all. 

Our powers were explicit, and confined to the solc^ 
and express purpose of revising the articles of confed-^ 
eration, and reporting such alterations and provisions 
therein, as shall render the federal constitution ade* 
quate to the exigencies of government and the preser- 
vation of the Union. 



APPENDIX. 306 

Prom these expressions we were led to believe, that 
a system of consolidated government could not, in the 
remotest degree, have been in contemplation of the 
legislature of this State ; for that so important a trust 
as the adopting measures which tended to deprive the 
State government of its most essential rights of sover- 
eignty, and to place it in a dependent situation, could 
not have been confided by implication ; and the cir- 
cumstance, that the acts of the convention were to re- 
ceive a State approbation in the last resort, forcibly 
corroborated the opinion, that our powers could not 
involve the subversion of a constitution, which, being 
immediately derived from the people, could only be 
abolished by their express consent^ and not by a legis- 
lature, possessing authority vested in them for its pres- 
ervation. Nor could we suppose, that, if it had been 
the intention of the legislature to abrogate the existing 
confederation, they would, in such pointed terms, have 
directed the attention of their delegates to the revision 
and amendment of it, in total exclusion of every other 
idea. 

Reasoning in this manner, we were of opinion, that 
the leading feature of every amendment ought to be 
the preservation of the individual States, in their un- 
controlled constitutional rights ; and that,, in reserving 
these, a mode might have been devised of granting to 
the confederacy the moneys arising from a general 
system of revenue, the power of regulating commerce, 
and enforcing the observance of foreign treaties, and 
other necessary matters of less moment. 

Exclusive of our objections originating from the 
want of power, we entertained an opinion, that a gen- 
eral government, however guarded by declarations of 
rights, or cautionary provisions, must unavoidably, in 
26* 



306 APPENDIX. 

a short time, be prcnluctiye of the destruction of the 
civil liberty of such citizens as could be effectually 
coerced by it ; by reason of the extensive territory of 
the United States, the dispersed situation of its inhab^ 
itants, and the insuperable difficulty of controlling or 
counteracting the views of a set of men, (however un« 
constitutional and oppressive their acts might be,) pos- 
sessed of all the powers of government; and who, 
from their remoteness from their constituents, and 
necessary permanency of office, could not be supposed 
to be uniformly actuated by an attention to their wel- 
fare and happiness ; that, however wise and energetic 
the principles of the general government might be, the 
extremities of the United States could not be kept in 
due submission and obedience to its laws, at the dis- 
tance of many hundred miles from the seat of govern- 
ment ; that if the general legislature was composed of 
so numerous a body of men as to represent the interests 
of all the inhabitants of the United States, in the usual 
and true ideas of representation, the. expense of sup^ 
porting it would become intolerably burdensome ; and 
that, if a few only were vested with a power of legis- 
lation, the interests of a great majority of the inhab- 
itants of the United States must necessarily be un- 
known ; or if known, even in the first stages bf the 
operations of the new government, unattended to. 

These reasons were, in our opinion, conclusive 
against any system of consolidated government. To 
that reconmiended by the convention, we suppose mosi 
of them very forcibly apjdy. 

It is not our intention to pursue this subject further 
than merely to explain our conduct in the discharge 
of the trust which the honorable the legislature reposed 
in lis. Interested, however, as we are, in common 



APPENDIX. 307 

with our fellow citizens, in the result, we cannot for- 
bear to declare, that we have the strongest apprehen- 
sions, that a government so organized as that recom- 
mended by the conv mtion, cannot afford that security 
to equal and permanent liberty, which we wished to 
make an invariable object of our pursuit. 

We were not present at the completion of the new 
constitution; but, before we left the convention, its 
principles were so well established, as to convince us, 
that no alteration was to be expected to conform it to 
our ideas of expediency and safety. A persuasion, that 
our further attendance would be fruitless and unavail* 
ing, rendered us less solicitous to return. 

We have thus explained our motives for opposing 
the adoption of the national constitution, which we 
conceived it our duty to communicate to your Excel- 
lency, to be submitted to the consideration of the 
honorable legislature. 

We have the honor to be, with the greatest respect, 
your Excellency's most obedient and very humble 
servants, 

ROBERT YATES, 
JOHN LANSING, Jun, , 

His Excellency Grovernor Clinton. 



308 APPENDIX. 



A LETTER 

OF. HIS EXCELLENCY EDMimB RANDOLPH, ESQUIRE, ON THE 
FEDERAL CONSTITUTION, ADDRESSED TO THE HONORABLE 
THE SPEAKER OF . THE HOUSE OF DELEGATES, VIRGINIA. 

Richmond, October 10th, 1787. 
Sir, 

The constitution, which I enclosed to the General 
Assembly in a late official letter, appears without my 
signature. This circumstance, although trivial in its 
own nature^ has been rendered rather important to 
myself at least, by being misunderstood by some, and 
misrepresented by others'. As I disdain to conceal the 
reasons for withholding my subscription, I have always 
been, still am, and ever shall be, ready to proclaim 
them to the world. To the legislature, therefore, by 
whom I was deputed to the federal convention, I beg 
leave now to address them ; affecting no indiflference 
to public opinion, but resolved not to court it by an 
unmanly sacrifice of my own judgment. 

As this explanation will involve a • summary, but 
general review of our federal situation, you will par- 
don me, I trust, although I should transgress the usual 
bounds of a letter. 

Before my departure for the convention, I believed, 
that the confederation was not so eminently defective 
as it had been supposed. But, after I had entered into 
a free communication with those who were best in- 
formed of the condition and interest of each State ; 
after I had compared the intelligence derived from 
them, with the properties which ought to characterize 
the government of our Union, I became persuaded, 
that the confederation was destitute of every energy, 
which a constitution of the United States ought lo 



AFFSNPIX. 309 

For the objects proposed by its institution were, 
that it should be a shield against foreign hostility, and 
a firm resort against domestic commotion; that it 
should cherish trade, and promote the prosperity of 
the States under its care. 

But these are not among the attributes of our pr».s- 
ent Union. Severe experience under the pressure of 
war, — a ruinous weakness manifested since the return 
of peace ; and the contemplation of those dangers, 
which darken the future prospect, have condemned 
the hope of grandeur and of safety under the auspices 
of the confederation. 

In the exigencies of war, indeed, the history of its 
effects is but short ; the final ratification having been 
delayed until the beginning of the year 17S1, But, 
however short, this period is. distinguished by melaur 
choly testimonies of its inability to maintain in hal^ 
mony, the social intercourse of the States, to defend 
Congress against encroachments on their rights, and 
to obtain by requisitions, supplies to the federal treas^ 
ury, or recruits to the federal armies. I shall not 
attempt an enumeration of the particular instances ; 
but leave to your own remembrance and the records 
of Congress, the support of the assertions. 

In the season of peace too, not many years have 
elapsed ; and yet each of them has produced fatal 
examples of delinquency, and sometimes of pointed 
opposition to federal duties. To the various remoiv 
strances of Congress I appeal, for a gloomy, but unex- 
aggerated narrative of the injuries which our faith, 
honor, and happiness have sustained by the failure of 
the States. 

But these evils are past ; and some may be led by 
HI honest zeal to conclude, that they cannot be ro* 



310 APPENDIX. 

peated. Yes, sir, they will be repeated as long as the 
confederation exists, and will bring with them other 
mischiefs springing from the same source, which can- 
not be yet foreseen in their full array of terror. 
^ If we examine the constitution and laws of the sev- 
ers^ States, it is immediately discovered, that the law 
of nations is unprovided with sanctions in many cases, 
which deeply aflect public dignity and public justice. 
The letter, however, of the confederation does not 
permit Congress to remedy those defects, and such an 
authority, although evidently deducible from its spirit, 
cannot, without violation of the second article, be as- 
sumed. Is it not a political phenomenon, that the 
head of the confederacy should be doomed to be 
plunged into war, from its wretched impotency to 
check offences against this law; and sentenced to 
witness, in unavailing anguish, the infraction of their 
engagements to foreign sovereigns ? 

And yet, this is not the only grievous point of 
weakness. After a war shall be inevitable, the requi- 
sitions of Congress for quotas of men or money, will 
again prove unproductive and fallacious. Two causes 
will always conspire to this baneful consequence. 

1. No government can be stable, which hangs on 
human inclination alone, unbiassed by coercion ; and 
2. from the very connexion between States bound 
to proportionate contributions, jealousies and suspi- 
cions naturally arise, which at least chill the ardor, if 
they do not excite the murmurs of the whole. I do 
not forget, indeed, that, by one sudden impulse, our 
part of the American continent has been thrown into 
a military posture, and that, in the earlier annals of 
the war, our armies marched to the field on the mere 
recommendations of Congress. But ought we to argue 

-V, / 



APPENDIX. 311 

from a contest, thus signalized by the magnitude of 
its stake, that, as often as a flame shall be hereafter 
kindled, the same enthusiasm will fill our legions, or 
renew them, as they may be filled by losses ? 

If not, where shall we find protection ? Impressions, 
like those, which prevent a compliance with requisi- 
tions of regular forces, will deprive the American re- 
public of the services of militia. But let us suppose 
that they are attainable, and acknowledge, as I always 
shall, that they are the natural support of a free gov- 
ernment. When it is remembered, that in their ab- 
sence agriculture must languish, that they are not 
habituated to military exposures and the rigor of mili- 
tary discipline, and that the necessity of holding in 
readiness successive detachments, carries the expense 
far beyond that of enlistments, this resource ought 
to be adopted with caution. 

As strongly too am I persuaded, that the requisi- 
tions for. money will not be more cordially received. 
For besides the distrust, which would prevail with 
respect to them also, besides the opinion, entertained 
by each State, of its own liberality and unsatisfied 
demands against the United States, there is another 
consideration not less worthy of attention, — the first 
rule for determining each quota of the value of all 
lands granted or surveyed, and of the buildings and 
improvements thereon. It is no longer doubted, that 
an equitable, uniform mode of estimating that vahie, 
is impracticable ; and, therefore, twelve States have 
substituted the number of inhabitants under certain 
limitations, as the standard according to which money 
is to be furnished. But, under the subsisting articles 
of the Union, the assent of the thirteenth State is 
necessary, and has not yet been given. This does of 



312 APPENDIX 

♦ 

itself lessen the hope of procuring a revenue for fed- 
eral uses; and the miscarriage of the impost almost 
rivets our despondency. 

Amidst these disappointmentSi it would afford some 
consolation, if, when rebellion shall threaten any State, 
an ultimate asylum could be found under the wing of ^ 
Congress. But it is at least equivocal, whether they 
can intrude forces into a State, rent asunder by civil 
discord, even with the purest solicitude for our federal 
welfare, and on the most urgent entreaties of the State 
itself. Nay, the very allowance of this power would 
be pageantry alone, from the want of money and of 
men. 

To these defects of congressional power, the history 
of man has subjoined others, not less alarming. I 
earnestly pray, that the recollection of common suffer- 
ings, which terminated in common glory, Inay check 
the sallies of violence, and perpetuate mutual friend- 
ship between the States. Bat I cannot presume, that - 
we are superior to those unsocial passions, which- un- 
der like circumstances have infested more anci^ttt 
nations. I cannot presume, that through all time, in ' 
the daily mixture of American citizens with eMh 
other, in the conflicts for commercial advantages, in 
the discontents which the neighbourhood of territory 
has been seen to engender in other quarters of the 
globe, and in the efforts of faction and intrigue ; thir- 
teen distinct communities under no effective superin^ 
tending control (as the United States confessedly now 
are, notwithstanding the bold terms of the confedera- 
tion), will avoid a hatred to each other^ deep and 
deadly. 

In the prosecution of this inquiry, we shall find the 
general prosperity to decline under a system 4!h,us un- 



APPENDIX. 313 

nenred. No sooner is the merchant prepared for foreign 
ports, with the treasures which this new world kindly 
offers to his acceptance, than it is announced to him, 
.that they are shut against American shipping, or open- 
ed under oppressive regulations. He urges Congress 
to a counter-policy, and is answered only by a condo- 
lence on the general misfortune. He is immediately 
struck with the conviction, that,- until exclusion shall 
be opposed to exclusion, and restriction to restriction, 
the American flag will be disgraced. For who can 
conceive, that thirteen legislatures, viewing commerce 
under different regulations, and fancying themselves 
discharged from every obligation to concede the small- 
est of their commercial advantages for the benefit of the 
whole, will be wrought into a concert of action in de- 
fiance of every prejudice ? Nor is this all ; let the great 
improvements, be recounted, which have enriched and 
illustrated Europe ; let it be noted, how few those are, 
which will be absolutely denied to the United States, 
comprehending within their boundaries the choicest 
blessings of climate, soil, and navigable waters ; then 
let the most 'sanguine patriot banish, if he can, the 
mortifying belief, that all these must sleep, until they 
shall be roused by the vigor of a national government. 
I have not exemplified the preceding remarks by 
minute details ; because they are evidently fortified 
by truth, and the consciousness of the United States 
of America. I shall, therefore, no longer deplore the 
unfitness of the confederation to secure our peace ; but 
proceed, with a truly unaffected distrust of my own 
opinions, to examine what order of powers the gov- 
ernment of the United States ought to enjoy ? How 
they ought to be defended against encroachments? 
Whether they can be interwoven in the confederation, 
27 



314 APPENDIX. 

without an alteration of its very essence, or must be 
lodged in new hands ? Showing, at the same time, the 
convulsions which seem to await us, from a dissolu- 
tion of the Union or partial confederacies. 

To mark the kind and degree of authority, which 
ought to be confided to the government of the United 
States, is no more than to reverse the description 
which I have already given of the defects of the con- 
federation. 

* From thence it will follow, that the operations of 
peace and war will be clogged without regular ad- 
vances of money, and that these will be slow indeed, 
if dependent on suppUcation alone. For what better 
name do requisitions deserve, which may be evaded 
or opposed without the fear of co^cion ? But, although 
coercion is an indispensable ingredient, it ought not to 
be directed against a State, as a State ; it being im- 
possible to attempt it except by blockading the trade 
of the delinquent, or carrying war into its bowels. 
Even if these violent schemes were eligible, in other 
respects, both of them might perhaps be defeated by 
the scantiness of the public chest ; would be tardy in 
their complete effect, as the expense of the land and 
naval equipments must be first reimbursed ; and might 
drive the {Mroscribed State into the desperate resolve 
of inviting foreign alliances. Against each of them lie 
separate, unconquerable objections. A blockade is not 
equally applicable to all the States, they being differ- 
ently circumstanced in commerce euid in ports ; nay, 
an excommunication from the privilege of the Union 
would be vain, because every regulation or prohibition 
may be easily eluded under the rights of American 
citizenship, or of foreign nations. But how shall we 
speak of the intrusion of troops? Shall we arm citi- 



APPENDIX. 315 

zens against citizens, and habituate them to shed kin- 
dred blood ? Shall we risk the inflicting of wounds 
which will generate a rancour never to be subdued ? 
Would there be no room to fear, that an army accus- 
tomed to fight for the establishment of authcnity, 
would salute an emperor of their own ? Let Us not 
bring these things into jeopardy. Let us rather sub- 
stitute the same process by which individuals are 
compelled to contribute to the government of their 
own States. Instead of making requisitions to the 
legislatures, it would appear more proper, that taxes 
should be imposed by the federal head, under due 
modifications and guards; that the collectors should 
demand from the citizens their respective quotas, and 
be supported as in the collection of ordinary taxes. 

It follows too, that, as the general government will 
be responsible to foreign nations, it ought to be able 
to annul any offensive measure, or enforce any public 
right. Perhaps among the topics on which they may 
be aggrieved or complain, the commercial intercourse, 
and the manner in which contracts are < discharged, 
may constitute the principal articles of clamor. 

It follows too, thlit the general government ought 
to be the supreme arbiter for adjusting every conten- 
tion among the States. In all their connexions, there- 
fore, with each other, and particularly in commerce, . 
which will probably create the greatest discord^ it 
ought to hold the reins. 

It follows too, that the general government ought 
to protect each State against domestic as well as ex- 
ternal violence. 

And lastly, it follows, that, through the general gov- 
ernment alone, can we ever assume the rank to which 
we are entitled by our resources and situation. 



316 APPENDIX.. 

Should the people of America surrender these pow- 
ers, they can be paramount to the constitutions ,and 
ordinary acts of legislation, only by being delegated 
by them. I do not pretend to affirm, but I venture to 
believe, that, if the confederation had been solemnly 
questioned in opposition to our constitution, or even 
to one of our laws, posterior to it, it must have given 
way. For never did it obtain a higher ratification, 
than a resolution of assembly in the daily form. 

This will be one security against encroachment. 
But another not less effectual is, to- exclude the indi- 
vidual States from any agency in the national govern- 
ment, as far as it may be safe, and their interposition 
may not be absolutely necessary. 

But now, Sir, permit me to declare, that, in my hum- 
ble judgment, the powers by which alone the bless- 
ings of a general government can be accomplished, 
cannot be interwoven in the confederation, without a 
change in its very essence, or, in other words, that the 
confederation must be thrown aside. This is almost 
demonstrable, from the inefficacy of requisitions, and 
from the necessity of converting them into acts of 
authority. My suffrage, as a citizen, is also for addi- 
tional powers. But to whom shall we commit these 
acts of authority, these additional powers ? To Con- 
gress ? When I formerly lamented the defects in the 
jurisdiction of Congress, I had no view to indicate any 
other opinion, than that the federal head ought not to 
be so circumscribed. For, free as I am at all times to 
profess my reverence for that body, and the individ- 
uals who compose it, I am yet equally free to make 
known my aversion to repose such a trust in a tribu- 
nal so constituted. My objections are not the visions 
of theory, but the result of my own observations in 



APPETNDIX. 317 

America, and of the experience of others abroad. 1. 
The legislative and executive are concentred in the 
same persons. This, where real power exists, must 
eventuate in tyranny. 2. The representation of the 
States bears no proportion to their importance. This 
is an unreasonable subjection of the will of the major- 
ity to that of the minority. 3. The mode o( election, 
and the liability of being recalled, may too often ren* 
der the delegates rather partisans of their own States 
than representatives of the Union. 4. Cabal and in- 
trigue must consequently gain an ascendency in a: 
course of years. 5. A single house of legislation will 
sometimes be precipitate, perhaps passionate. 6. As 
long as seven States are required for the smallest, and 
nine for the greatest voters, may not foreign influence 
at some future day insinuate itself, so as to interrupt 
every active exertion ? 7. To crown the whole, it is 
scarce within the vei^ of possibility, that so numer- 
ous an assembly should acquire that secrecy, despatch, 
and vigor, which are the test of excellence in the ex- 
ecutive department. 

My inference from these facts and principles, is, 
that the new powery must be deposited in a new body, 
growing out of a consolidation of the Union, as far as 
the circumstances of the States will allow. Perhaps, 
however, some may meditate its dissolution, and oth- 
ers, partial confederacies. 

The first is an idea awftil indeed, and irreconcil- 
able with a very early, and hitherto uniform convic- 
tion, that without union we mrust be undone. For, 
before the voice of war was heard, the pulse of the 
then colonies was tried, and found ta beat in imison. 
The unremitted labor of our enemies was to divide, 
and the policy of every Congress to bind us together. 
27* 



318 APPENDIX. 

Biit in uo example was this truth more clearly di^ 
played, than in the prudence with which indepen- 
dence was unfolded to the sight, and in the forbearance 
to declare it, until America almost unanimously called 
for it. After we had thus launched into troubles never 
before explored, and in the hour of heavy distress, the 
remembrance of our social strength not only forbade 
despair, but drew from Congress the most illustrious 
repetition of their settled purpose to despise all terms 
short of independence. 

Behold, then, how successful and glorious we have 
been, while we acted in fraternal concord. But let us 
discard the illusion, that by this success, and this 
glory, the crest of danger has irrecoverably fallen. 
Our governments are yet too youthful to have acquired 
stability from habit. Our very quiet depends upon the 
duration of the Union. Among the upright and intel- 
ligent, few can read without emotion the future fate 
of the States, if severed from each other. Then shall 
we learn the full weight of foreign intrigue. Then 
shall we iiear of partitions of our country. If a prince, 
inflamed by the lust of conquest, should use one State 
as the instrument of enslaving others ; if every State 
is to be wearied by perpetual alarms, and compelled to 
maintain large military establishments ; if all questions 
are to be decided by an appeal to arms, where a differ- 
ence of opinion cannot be removed by negotiation ; in 
a word, if all the direful misfortunes which haunt the 
peace of rival nations, are to triumph over the land, for 
what have we to contend ? why have we exhausted 
our wealth ? why have we basely betrayed the heroic 
martyrs of the federal cause ? 

But dreadful as the total dissolution of the Union is 
to my mind, I entertain no less horror at the thought 



APPENDIX. 319 

of partial confederacies. I have not the least ground 
for supposing, that an overture of this kind would be 
listened to by a single State ; and the presumption is, 
that the politics of a greater part of the States flow 
from the warmest attachment to an union of the whole. 
If, however, a lesser confederacy could be obtained 
by Virginia, let me conjure my countrymen well to 
weigh the probable consequences, before they attempt 
to form it. 

On such an event; the strength of the Union would 
be divided in two, or perhaps three parts. Has it so 
increased since the war as to be divisible, and yet re- 
main sufficient for our happiness ? 

The utmost limit of any partial confederacy, which 
Virginia could expect to form, would comprehend the 
three southern States, and her nearest northern neigh- 
bour. But they, like ourselves, are diminished in their 
real force, by the mixture of an unhappy species of 
population. 

Again may I ask, whether the opulence of the Unit- 
ed States has been augmented since the war ? This 
is answered in the negativo, by a load of debt, and the 
declension of trade. 

At all times must a southern confederacy support 
ships of war and a soldiery ? As soon would a navy 
move from the forest, and an army spring from the 
earth, as such a confederacy, indebted, impoverished 
in its commerce, and destitute of men, could, for some 
years at least, provide an ample defence for itself. 

Let it not be forgotten, that nations, which can en- 
force their rights, have large claims against the United 
States, and that the creditor may insist on payment 
from any of them. Which of them would probably 
be the victim ? The most productive, and the most 



390 APPENDIX. 

exposed. When vexed by reprisals or war, the south- 
em States will sue for alliance on this continent or 
beyond sea. If for the former, the necessity of an 
union of the* whole is decided ; if for the latter, Amer- 
ica will, I fear, react the scenes of confusion and blood- 
shed exhibited among most of those nations, which 
have, too late, repented the folly of relying on auxil- 
iaries. 

Two or more confederacies cannot but be compet- 
' itors for power. The ancient friendship between the 
citizens of America being thus cut off, bitterness and 
hostility will succeed in its place ; in order to- prepare 
against surrounding danger, we shall be compelled to 
vest somewhere or other power approaching near to 
military government. 

The annals of the world have abounded so much 
with instances of a divided people being a prey to for- 
eign influence, that I shall not restrain my apprehen- 
sions of it, should our Union be torn asunder. The 
opportunity of insinuating it will be multiplied in pro- 
portion to the parts into which we may be broken. 

In short. Sir, I am fatigued with summoning up to 
my imagination the miseries which will harass the 
United States, if torn from each other,^aDd^%rhich will 
not end until they are superseded by 6esb mischiefs 
under the yoke of a tyrant. 

I come, therefore, to the last, and perhaps OQly ref- 
uge in our difficulties, a consoUdatioB of the Union, as 
far as circumstances will permit. To fulfil this desir- 
able object, the Constitution was framed by the federal 
convention. A quorum of eleven States, and the only 
member from a twelfth, have subscribed it ; Mr. Ma- 
son of Virginia, Mr. Gerry of Massachusetts, and my- 
self, having refused to subscribe. 



APPENDIX. 321 

Why I refused, will, I hope, be solved to the satis- 
faction of those who know me, by saying, that a sense 
of duty commanded me thus to act. It commanded 
me. Sir ; for believe me, that no event of my life ever 
occupied more of my reflection. To subscribe, seemed 
to offer no inconsiderable gratification, since it would 
have presented me to the world as a fellow-laborer 
with the learned and zealous statesmen of America. 

But it was far more interesting to my feelings, that 
I was about to differ from three of my colleagues ; one 
of whom is, to the honor of the country which he has 
saved, embosomed in their affections, and can receive 
no praise from the highest lustre of language; the 
other two of whom, have been long enrolled among 
the wisest and best lovers of the commonwealth ; and 
the unshaken and intimate friendship of all of whom, 
I have ever prized, and still do prize, as among the 
happiest of all acquisitions. I was no stranger to the 
reigning partiality for the members who composed the 
convention, and had not the smallest doubt, that from 
this cause, and from the ardor for a reform of govern- 
ment, the first applauses, at least, would be loud 'and 
profuse. I suspected too, that there was something in 
the human breast, which for a time would be apt to 
construe a temperateness in politics, into an enmity to 
the Union. Nay, I plainly foresaw, that, in the dis- 
sensions of parties, a middle line would probably be 
interpreted into a want of enterprise and decision. 
But these considerations, how seducing soever, were 
feeble opponents to the suggestions of my conscience. 
"I was sent to exercise my judgment, and to exercise it 
was my fixed determination ; being instructed by even 
an imperfect acquaintance with mankind, that self- 
approbation is the only true reward which a political 



382 APPENDIX. 

career can bestow, and that popularity would have 
been but another name for perfidy, if, to secure it, 
I had given up the freedom of thinking for my- 
self. 

It, would have been a peculiar pleasure to me, to 
have ascertained before I left Virginia, the temper and 
genius of my fellow citizens, considered relatively to 
a government so substantially differing from the con- 
federation as that which is 'now submitted. But this 
was, for many obvious reasons, impossible ; and I was 
thereby deprived of what I thought the necessary 
guides. 

I saw, however, that the confederation was totter- 
ing from its own weakness, and that the sitting of the 
donvention was a signal of its total insufficiency. I 
was, therefore, re»ly lii^assent to a scheme of govern" 
Bient which was proposed, and which went beyond 
the Umits of the confederation, believing, that without 
being too extensive, it would have preserved our tran- 
quillity, until that temper and that genius should be 
collected. 

Biit when the plan which is now before the General 
Assembly was on its passage through the convention, 
I moved, that the State conventions shoidd be at lib- 
erty to amend, and that a second geneiA convention 
should be holden to discuss the amendments which 
should be suggested by them. This iuotion was 
in some measure justified by the manner in which 
the confederation was forwarded originally, by Con- 
gress to the State legislatures, in many of which 
amendments were proposed, and thoste amendments 
Were afterwards examined in Congress. Such a mo- 

ti was doubly expedient here, as the delegaticm of 
much more power was sought for. But it was 



APPENDIX. 323 

negatived. I then expressed my unwillingness to 
sign. My reasons were the following : 

1. It is said in the resolutions which accompany the 
Constitution, that it is to be submitted to a convention 
of delegates, chosen in each State by the people there- 
of, for their assent and ratification. The meaning of 
these terms is allowed universally to be, that the coi> 
vention must either adopt the Constitution in the whole, 
or reject it in the whole, and is positively forbidden to 
amend. If therefore, I had signed, I should have felt 
myself bound to be silent as to amendments, and to 
endeavour to support the Constitution without the cor^ 
rection of a letter. With this consequence before my 
eyes, and with a determination to attempt an amend** 
ment, I was taught by a regard for consistency, not to 
sign. 

2. My opinion always was, and still is, that every 
eitizen of America, let the crisis be what it may, ought 
to have a full opportunity to propose, through his rep^ 
resentatives, any amendment which, in his apprehen- 
sion, tends to the public welfare. By signing, I should 

. have contradicted this sentiment. 

3. A constitution ought to have the hearts of the 
people on its side. But if at a future day it should be 
burdensome, after having been adopted in the whole, 
and they should insinuate, that it was in some meas- 
ure fotced upon them, by being confined to the single 
alternative of taking or rejecting it altogether, under 
my impressions, and with my opinions, I should not 
be able to justify myself, had I signed. 

4. I was always satisfied, as I have now experi« 
enced, that this great subject would be placed in new 

. lights and attitudes by the criticism of the world ; and 
lliat no man can assure himself how a constitution will 



324 APPENDIX. • * 

work for a course of years, iintil at least he shall have 
heard the observations of the people at large. I also 
fear more from inaccuracies in a constitution, than 
from gross errors in any other composition ; because 
our dearest interests are to be regulated by it j and 
power, if loosely given, especially where it will be in- 
terpreted with great latitude, may bring sorrow in its 
execution. Had I signed with these ideas, I should 
have virtually shut my ears against the information 
which I ardently desired. 

6. I was afraid, that if the Constitution was to be 
submitted to the people, to be wholly adopted or wholly 
rejected by them, they would not only reject it, but 
bid a lasting farewell to the Union. This formidable 
event I wished to avert, by keeping myself free to 
propose amendments, and thus, if possible, to remove 
the obstacles to an effectual government. But it will 
be asked, whether all these arguments were not well 
weighed in the convention. They were, Sir, with 
great candor. Nay, when I called to mind the respect- 
ability of those, with whom I was associated, I almost 
lost confidence in these principles. On other occa- 
sions, I should cheerfully have yielded to a majority ; 
on this, the fate of thousands yet unborn enjoined me 
not to yield until I was convinced, 

Again, may I be asked, why the mode pointed out 
in the Constitution for its amendment, may not be a 
sufficient security against its imperfections, without 
now arresting it in its progress? My answers are: 
1. That it is better to amend while we have the Con- 
stitution in our power, while the passions of designing 
men are not yet enlisted, and while a bare majority of 
the States may amend, than to wait for the uncertain 
assent of three fourths of the States. 2. That a bad 



APPENDIX. 326 

feature in government becomes more and more fixed 
every day. 3. That frequent changes of a constitu- 
tion, even if practicable, ought not to be wished, 
but avoided as much as possible. And 4. That, in 
the present case, it may be questionable, whether, after 
the particular advantages of its operation shall be 
dtecerned, three fourths of the States can be induced 
to amend. 

I confess, that it is no easy task to devise a scheme 
which shall be suitable to the views of all. Many ex- 
pedients have occurred to me, but none of them appear 
less exceptionable than this ; that, if our convention 
should choose to amend, another federal convention be 
recommended ; that in that federal convention the 
amendments proposed by this or any other State be- 
discussed ; and if incorporated in the Constitution or 
rejected, or if a proper number of the other States 
should be unwilling to accede to a second convention, 
the Constitution be again laid before the same State 
conventions, which shall again assemble on the sum- 
mons of the executives, and it shall be either wholly 
adopted or wholly rejected, without a further power 
of amendment I count such a delay as nothing in 
comparison with so grand an object; especially too 
as the privilege of amending must terminate after the- 
use of it once. 

I should now conclude this letter, which is already 
too long, were it not incumbent on me, from having 
contended for amendments, to set forth the particulars 
which I conceive to require correction. I undertake 
this with reluctance, because it is remote from my in- 
tentions to catch the prejudices or prepossessions of 
any man. But, as I mean only to manifest, that I 
have not been actuated by caprice, an(} now to explaia 



3$i6 APPENDIX. 

every objection at full length would be an immense 
labor, I shall content myself with enumerating certain 
heads, in which the constitution is most repugnant to 
my wishes. 

The two first points are the equality of suffrage in 
the Senate, and the submission of commerce to a 
mere majority in the legislature, with no other check 
than the revision of the President. I conjecture, that 
neither of these things can be corrected ; and particu- 
larly the former, without which we must have risen 
perhaps in disorder. 

But I am sanguine in hoping, that, in every other 
justly obnoxious cause, Virginia will be seconded by a 
majority of the States. I hope that she will be sec- 
jonded, 1. In causing all ambiguities of expression to 
be precisely explained. 2. In rendering the President 
ineligible after a given number of years. 3. In taking 
from him the power of nominating to the judiciary 
offices, or of filling up vacancies which may there 
happen during the recess of the Senate, by granting 
commissions which shall expire at the end of their 
next sessions. 4. In taking from him the power of 
pardoning for treason, at least before conviction. 5. In 
drawing a line between the powers of Congress and 
individual States ; and in defining the former, so as to 
leave no clashing of jurisdictions, nor dangerous dis- 
putes ,• and to prevent the one from being swallowed 
up by the other, under cover of general words and 
implication. 6. In abridging the power of the Sen- 
ate to make treaties supreme laws of the land. 7. In 
incapacitating the Congress to determine their own 
salaries. And, 8. In limiting and defining the judicial 
power. 

The proper remedy must be consigned to the wis* 



APPENDIX. 327 

dom of tMe convention ; and the final step which Vir- 
ginia shall pursue, if her overtures shall be discarded, 
must also rest with them. 

You will excuse me, Sir, for having been thus 
tedious. My feelings and duty demanded this expo- 
sition; for through no other channel could I rescue 
my omission to sign from misrepresentation, and in 
no more effectual way could I exhibit to the General 
Assembly an unreserved history of my conduct. 

I have the honor. Sir, to be, with great respect, your 
most qbedient servant, 

EDMUND RANDOLPH. 



s 



r^ 



BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCH. 



Chief Justice Yates, the subject of the following 
memoir, was born on the 27th day of January, 1738, 
in the city of Schenectady, in this State. At the age 
of sixteen, he was sent by his parents to the city of 
New York, where he received a classical education, 
and afterwards studied the law with William Living- 
ston, Esquire, a celebrated barrister in that metropolis, 
and father of Biockholst Livingston, Esquire, one of 
the judges of the Supreme Court of the United States. 
On the completion of his i^tudies he was admitted to 
the bar, and soon after fixed his residence in the city 
of Albany, where in due time he received the degrees 
of solicitor and counsellor in the Court of Chancery. 
He soon became eminent in his profession, and, on ac- . 
count of his incorruptible integrity, was known by the 
appellation of the hjonest lawyer. At the age of 
twenty-seven, he married Miss Jane Van Ness, of Co- 
lumbia county. On the prospect of a rupture between 
this country and Great Britain, his open and avowed 
principles as a Whig brought him into political notice, 
and several well written essays, which were the pro- 
ductions of his pen, contributed in no small degree to 
establish his reputation as a writer in defence of the 
rights and liberties of his country. He had already 
28* 



330 APPENDIX. 

held a seat as a member of the corporation of the city 
of Albany, and as attorney and counsel to that board ; 
and he was soon after appointed a member of the Com- 
mittee of PubUc Safety, a body of men who were in- 
vested with almost inquisitorial powers, and who had 
justly become the dread and scourge of that class of 
men called Tories. By the exertions of Chief Justice 
Yates, the proceedings of that tribunal were tempered 
with moderation, and the patriotic zeal of the commu- 
nity confined within its proper and legitimate sphere 
of action. We find him not long afterwards holding 
a seat in the Provincial Congress of his own State, 
and, during the reoess of that body, performing the 
complicated and arduous duties of chairman of a com- 
mittee for the organization and direction of military 
operations against the common enemy. 

In the year 1777, the constitution of this State was 
adopted, and Chief Justice Yates was an active and 
distinguished member of the convention that framed 
that instrument. During the same year he received, 
without solicitation, the appointment of a judge of the 
Supreme Court, at a time when an extensive and 
lucrative practice as a lawyer, held out to him strong 
inducements to decline its acceptance. Regardless, 
however, of private interest, he entered upon the du- 
ties of that office rendered at the time peculiarly deli- 
cate and dangerous. He sat upon the bench, as a 
writer has expressed it, " with a halter about his 
neck," exposed to punishment as a rebel, hs^} our 
efforts for emancipation proved abortive; nor were 
these the least of his dangers. For in counties rav- 
aged or possessed by the enemy, or by secret domestic 
foes watching every opportunity to ruin or betray their 
country, he was sometimes obliged to hold his courts. 



APPENDIX. 331 

But no dangers could appal, nor fears deter him from 
a faithful and honest performance of the functions of 
his office. He was particularly distinguished for his 
impartiality in the trials of state criminals, and he 
was not unfrequently obliged to abate the intemperate 
zeal or ill-judged patriotism of the juries who were to 
decide upon the fate of unfortunate prisoners. On 
one occasion he sent a jury from the bar four times 
successively to reconsider a verdict of conviction 
which they had pronounced most unwarrantably 
against the accused, merely because they suspected 
he was a Tory, though without any proof that could 
authorize the verdict. As the accused had become 
very obnoxious to the great body of the Whigs, the 
legislature were inflamed, and seriously contemplated 
calling Chief Justice Yates before them to answer for 
his conduct. But he was alike indifierent to censure 
or applause in the faithful and independent exercise 
of his judicial duties, and the legislature at length 
prudently dropped the aflair. His salary during the 
war was very small, and hardly sufficient for the sup- 
port of himself and family. Indeed, before the scale 
of depreciation of continental money had been settled, 
he received one year's salary in that money at its 
nominal value, the whole of which was just sufficient 
(as he humorously observed) " to purchase a pound 
of green tea for his wife." He was often urged to 
unite with some of his friends in speculating on for- 
feited estates during the war, by which he might 
easily have enriched himself and his connexions with- 
out censure or suspicion ; and although such specula- 
tions were common, yet he would not consent to be- 
come wealthy upon the ruin of others. " No," said 
he, " I will sooner die a beggar than own a foot of 



332 APPENDIX. 

land acquired by such means." In Septeftiber, 1776, 
George Clinton, afterwards executive of this State, 
anxious to receive the cooperation of Chief Justice 
Yates in certain measures then deemed important and 
necessary, addressed him a letter, of which the fol- 
lowing is an extract : " We have at last arrived at a 
most important crisis, which will either secure the 
independence of our country or determine that she 
shall still remain in a state of vassalage to Great Brit- 
ain. I know your sentiments on this subject, and I 
am extremely happy to find that they agree so exactly 
with mine. But as we are called upon to act, as well 
as to think, your talents and exertions in the common 
cause cannot be spared." With such men as John 
Jay, Dr. Franklin, Chancellor Livingston, General 
Philip Schuyler, and Alexander Hamilton, he was in 
habits of intimacy and friendship. And to his rela- 
tives and more particular friends, Abraham Yates, Jun., 
former mayor of Albany, and Colonel Christopher 
Yates, the father of Joseph C. Yates, Esquire, the pres- 
ent judge of the Supreme Court, he was endeared 
by every tie of affection and esteem. These two last- 
named gentlemen were well known for their exertions 
in defence of their country, during the revolutionary 
war ; the former more particularly as the writer of 
certain spirited publications under the signatures of 
Sidney and Roughhewer, 

After the conclusion of the revolutionary war, he 
was chosen, together with General Hamilton and Chan- 
cellor Lansing, to represent his native State in the 
convention that formed the Constitution of the United 
States ; and to his labors in that convention we are in- 
debted for the preservation of some of the most impor- 



APPENDIX. 333 

tant debates that ever distinguished any age or coun- 
try.* He was also a member of the convention subse- 
quently held in this State, to whom that Constitution 
was submitted for adoption and ratification. His po- 
litical opinions were open and unreserved. He was op- 
posed to a consolidated national government, and friend- 
ly to a confederation of the States preserving their in- 
tegrity and equality as such. Although the form of gov- 
ernment eventually adopted, was not, in all its parts, 
agreeable to his views and wishes, still in all his dis- 
cussions, and especially in his judicial capacity, he 
deemed it a sacred duty to inculcate entire submission 
to, and reverence for, that Constitution. In the first 
charge which he delivered to a grand jury, immedi- 
ately after its adoption, he used the following lan- 
guage : " The proposed form of government for the 
Union has at length received the sanction of so many 
of the States as to make it the supreme law of the 
land, and it is not therefore any longer a question, 
whether or not its provisions are such as they ought 
to be in all their diflerent branches. We, as good 
citizens, are bound implicitly to obey them, for the 
united wisdom of America has sanctioned and con- 
firmed the act, and it would be little short of treason 
against the republic to hesitate in our obedience and 
respect to the Constitution of the United States of 
America. Let me therefore exhort you. Gentlemen, 
not only in your capacity as grand jurors, but in your 
more diurable and equally respectable character as citi- 

* Chief Justice Yates, though often solicited, refused during his life, to 
permit his notes of those debates to be published, not only because they 
were originally not written for the public^ eye, but because he conceived 
himself under honorable obligations to withhold their publication. These 
notes, after his death, fell into the hands of his widow, who disposed of 
them, and they are thus become public. 



'i 



334 APPEr^Dix. 

zens, to preserve inviolate this charter of our national 
rights and safety, a charter second only in dignity and 
importance to the Declaration of our Independence. 
We have escaped, it is true, by the blessing of Divine 
Providence, from the tyranny of a foreign foe, but let 
ns now be equally watchful in guarding against worse 
and far more dangerous enemies, — domestic broils 
and intestine divisions." Soon after this period he 
filled the important trust of commissioner to treat with 
the States of Massachusetts and Connecticut, on the 
subject of territory, and to settle certain claims of his 
native State against the State of Vermont. In 1790, 
he received the appointment of chief justice of the 
State of New York, and was twice supported for the 
office of governor, to which latter office he was on 
one occasion elected by a majority of votes ; but, on 
account of some real or supposed inaccuracy in some 
of the returns, he did not receive the certificate of his 
election. 

In January, 1798, having completed his sixtieth 
year, and with it, the constitutional term of his office, 
he retired from the bench of which for twenty-one 
years he had been its ornament and pride ; and re- 
sumed the practice of the law. So highly did the 
legislature estimate his former services and usefulness, 
that it was proposed in that body to fix an annual 
allowance or stipend on him for life, and the proposi- 
tion actually passed the Senate, but was laid aside in 
the Assembly, as being supposed to savor too much of 
the monarchical regulation called pensions, Deter- 
miaed, however, to provide for an old and faithful 
public servant, who had worn out his better days for 
the good of his country, the legislature appointed him 
a commissioner to settle disputed titles to lands in the 



APPENDIX. 336 

military tract, and this appointment he held till nearly 
the close of his life, when the law creating it ceased 
by its own limitation. On the 9th day of September, 
1801, he finished his mortal career, " full of honors 
and full of years," placing a firm reliance on the 
merits of an atoning Saviour, and the goodness of a 
merciful God. He left a widow and four children^ 
two of whom only are now living, a son and daugh- 
ter, the former of whom is the present secretary of 
this State. 

Chief Justice Yates died poor. He had always 
been indifferent to his own private interest, for his 
benevolent and patriotic feelings could not be regu- 
lated nor restrained by the cold calculations of avarice 
or gain. No man in this State was more esteemed 
than himself. He never had, it is believed, in the 
whole course of his life, a personal enemy, and the 
tears of the widow, the orphan, the destitute, and op- 
pressed, followed him to his grave. He was emphat- 
ically the honest man and the upright judge. His 
talents were of the higher order, and bis mariners were 
plain, attractive, and unassuming. His opinions at 
nisi prius were seldom found to be incorrect, and on 
the bench of the Supreme Court he was distinguished 
for a clear, discriminating mind, that readily arrived 
at the true merits of the case before him. It may be 
safely affirmed, that no single individual ever filled so 
many high and responsible stations with greater credit 
to himself, and honor to the State. His memory will 
be cherished as long as virtue is esteemed and talents 
respected, and his epitaph is written in the hearts of 
his fellow citizens, and in the history of his country.